As plans evolve for the celebration of the Golden Jubilee of Independence, the Ministry of Education seeks to advise candidates sitting Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examinations (CAPE) and Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) on May 26, that they will be accommodated at different educational facilities so as to not have any disturbances.Please note the names of the schools that will be accommodated at each examination centre.
Despite the abundant natural resources in Guyana and even with the expected production of oil, Guyana’s most important natural resource is its children.This is the view of former Attorney General Anil Nandlall as he distributed school bags and other essentials on behalf of East Berbice Sugar Workers Relief Committee as they prepare former sugar worker’s children for the new school year.“The responsibility of all of us is to ensure that the welfare of our children is always paramount and that whatever we do, we must ensure the advancement of our children’s welfare,” he said.Children of workers who were severed from the Skeldon estate when the factorySome of the children who received school bags and other essential school suppliesclosed its doors in December 2017 were given bags and other essential for the new school year complements of the East Berbice Sugar Workers Relief Committee (EBSWRC).The EBSWRC provided new school bags and other essentials for school to 150 students from the Corriverton, Skeldon and Messiah Primary Schools.Over 2000 workers at the Skeldon Estate were sent home when Government closed that estate.Speaking to the children and their parents at the Corriverton Primary School building, where the presentations were made last Saturday, Nandlall said we are living in a society where we are facing great challenges. Those challenges produce initiatives and organisations like the EBSEWRC.He noted that when the sugar estates were closed and thousands of workers lost their jobs and the future of their families became uncertain.“There children’s lives and future became dismal and out of that came this organisation and many of its kind right across the sugar belt. These organisations came up through the People’s Progressive Party working with other social partners to try to bring some relief to the sugar workers, their families and most importantly the children of the sugar workers,” Nandlall said.Member of Parliament Adrian Anamayah who is also a part of the organisation organised the presentation. He noted that most of the funding came from several Berbicians who nor reside overseas.Anamayah also related that the EBSEWRC has been providing hot meals to children of the severed workers since the start of the year.
…as productive sectors in decline, FDI driven by preparations for oilThe 2019 Ministry of Finance Mid-year report is out and according to one financial analyst who perused the document, it shows that Guyana is headed towards an unhealthy dependence on oil and potentially the dreaded Dutch disease.According to economist Dr Peter Ramsaroop on Saturday, the report shows that Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) is being driven at the moment by the oil sector, which is counterbalancing the uninspiring performance of the traditional sectors.“Imports of intermediate goods into Guyana in the first half of the year expanded by US$170.4 million to US$706 million, driven largely by other intermediate goods, chemicals, parts and accessories imported growing significantly on account of oil and gas activities.”“Imported capital goods increased substantially, by US$155.2 million to US$423 million, primarily attributed to a substantial expansion in mining machinery, again, supported by oil and gas activity,” Ramsaroop said.However, these are the very conditions that can lead to the ‘Dutch disease’; an economic term used to define an imbalance in the local economy of an oil producer that can include rising currency values, non-competitive exports and the decline of traditional sectors.“These are not indicators of a diversified economy that is growing but rather one that is now leaning towards sole dependency on one industry,” he said, noting that the Dutch disease is creeping in but there are no concrete measures to address it.Ramsaroop noted that Government’s projected growth rate of over 4 per cent is supported largely by this imbalance in investments in the petroleum sector and not the traditional sectors. He made it clear that such investments have little trickle-down effects to small or medium-sized businesses.According to the Bank of Guyana’s recently released first-quarter statistical bulletin, sugar experienced a major decline of 34.3 per cent, owing to the restructuring process the Guyana Sugar Corporation is undergoing. On the other hand, the decline of rice output by 9.3 per cent was attributed to the paddy bug infestation and the increased costs of production.The mining and quarrying sectors exhibited lower production. According to the bulletin, there was a 4.9 per cent decline in gold declarations. The Bank cited particular mining companies. Troy Resources output declined by 40.4 per cent, while Guyana Goldfields showed slight increases.One of the worst-hit sectors was the bauxite industry, which contracted by 24.4 per cent in terms of production.The Bank attributed this to industrial unrest at the Russian-owned bauxite company, RUSAL.“Analysis of the non-petroleum economy would reveal that the economy has not only been reeling from stagnation but rather, is regressing by as much as double-digit figures with even more troubling signs on the horizon,” Ramsaroop said.“What the Minister of Finance would wish to silence in the report that the inflation rate – already calculated using suspect and conservative figures for a Consumer Price Index (CPI) – has also been revised upwards by more than the growth he projects.”Dutch diseaseAmong the measures that have been touted to prevent the resource curse is a ‘depletion’ policy. Last year, this publication had quoted former Vice President for Strategy and Policy Development at BP, London, and visiting professor at King’s College, Nick Butler, as making this suggestion.Butler had said that a depletion policy would help to set the pace of growth in the oil sector. He said the idea behind this is to phase production over a long period, avoiding a gold rush and allowing local companies to build up their capabilities to enable them to win a share of any oil-related activity.“They don’t need to develop it all at once. I would support a depletion policy where you limit what you produce year by year to manage the inflow of money so that the exchange rate is not destroyed by this one single, successful industry,” he was quoted saying.That covers everything from the development of a new port, infrastructure, engineering support and all the other essential onshore services from food to accommodation for the oil workers.Butler noted that if Guyana is to get this wrong, it would have devastating effects for agriculture and local businesses. It would also mean employment will become less.It was only this week that, in the wake of a Bloomberg report critiquing Guyana’s unpreparedness for its oil and gas sector, Finance Minister Winston Jordan had admitted that indeed, Guyana is not at the stage where it ought to be ahead of first oil.This comes even as ExxonMobil is headed towards 2020 first oil, having found billions of barrels of oil in the Stabroek Block since 2015 and Tullow, a British-based oil company with shares in the Orinduik and Kanuku blocks, has also recently found oil.
…rob 6 familiesBandits went on a rampage at the Glasgow New Housing Scheme on the East Bank of Berbice (Region 6, East Berbice-Corentyne) over the weekend, creating havoc for residents as they attempted to enter, or were successful in entering, six homes.Four homes in the scheme were broken into on Sunday morning. In the previous week, two other homes were broken into, and victims had harrowing encounters with the bandits.In the wee hours of Monday, bandits invaded Lot 1724 Cracks Ville, Glasgow New Housing Scheme, EBB. Owner of the home, Clement John, explained that all of the rooms in the house are sealed, so no one heard when bandits prised open the back door with a crowbar. He gave no details of what was taken.At Sohan Ramdeen’s Lot 890 Glasgow New Housing Scheme home, louvre panes were removed but the bandits were unable to gain entry into the home. One occupant explained that he had heard the dogs barking and had thought that another animal was in the yard. According to reports, a can of sardines had been punctured and placed in the yard to distract the dogs. Ramdeen explained that it was not until sunrise that he discovered the louvre panes missing from his home.At about 00:30h on that same Monday, bandits attempted to hammer their way into another Cracks Ville home, despite screams from the occupants. “I jump up from my sleep when I hear. So I listened to hear if (there was) any other sound; but the next noise wasn’t so hard.Then I wake up my son and tell him that (bandits attacking) this house, and he say, ‘No, is cat.’… He decided to go and check the cameras, and then he see that three of the cameras turn in different directions, and so he go to the bedroom window and start screaming,” the homeowner said.Despite hearing the occupants of that home raising an alarm, the bandits continued to force their way into the building, which houses a shop. Fortunately, they could not penetrate the grill door that prohibits entry into the building, although they had wrenched open a door leading to the lower flat of the building. And the intruders fled after several residents responded to the cries of the besieged home occupants.The shop owner said the family had received information in December that persons were planning to burgle their home, and on the night they had received that information a vehicle was observed passing the home ten times, but vanished when police arrived in the area.The bandits could not gain entry into this homeThe early Monday morning bandit rampage also included an attack on teacher Debra Ward’s home. She said she was aware that at least one person was in her home at about 2:30h on Monday. She said the intruder pushed open her bedroom door, but she sprang out of bed and armed herself with a cutlass, causing the male intruder to escape through the front door.She later discovered that one Government laptop, a cellular phone and approximately $6000, most of which belongs to the school, had been taken from her home. She also discovered that a crowbar had been used to prise open the back door and grill of her home.Two other homes in the East Bank Berbice community had last Wednesday been broken into. Businessman Chris Hicks said the bandits had managed to make their way only into the lower flat of his home, from whence they removed almost $2M worth of equipment.He explained that during that attack, the bandits’ efforts to gain access to the upper flat of his home were thwarted because of the way the building is constructed. However, a masked man had climbed onto a part of the roof and had come face-to-face with him; and there was only a glass window separating the two men. According to Hicks, the man and his accomplices immediately fled the scene.And even as police responded to the Hicks report, three masked men burgled an unlicensed liquor restaurant that is situated in the same street where Hicks lives. Reports are that the bandits confiscated close to $200,000 in cash and a similar amount in jewelry from the shop owner and her school-age daughter before fleeing the scene.Having broken into that residence, the bandits allegedly woke up the sleeping occupant, Nadira, and told her not to sleep so soundly in the future, even as they demanded more cash and valuables.Police are investigating all these reports. Several persons have already been arrested.
0Shares0000Andre Villas Boas (R), driver and former head coach of English football teams Chelsea and Tottenham, answers journalists’ questions before a technical check-up in Lima ahead of the 2018 Dakar Rally © AFP / FRANCK FIFELIMA, Peru, Jan 6 – Having coached Chelsea and Tottenham in the unforgiving English Premier League and worked alongside the explosive Jose Mourinho, Andre Villas-Boas should have few problems confronting the 9,000km Dakar Rally.The Portuguese, who makes his debut in the motorsport’s most gruelling endurance event behind the wheel of a Toyota 4×4 on Saturday, decided to take part as a way of celebrating his 40th birthday. His participation will also carry on a family tradition — his uncle Pedro Villas-Boas competed in 1982 and 1984.“I have the free time and the stars aligned,” said Villas-Boas, who left his last coaching job at China’s Shanghai SIPG in November.“It’s the 40th edition of the Dakar, I’m 40 and my uncle competed in the race when he was 40.”But he was quick to add: “I don’t have the experience. We have the best team, the best co-driver (Ruben Faria), but not the best driver!”Jean-Marc Fortin, the director of the Overdrive Racing team, admitted that Villas-Boas faces a journey into the unknown as he navigates mountains and sand dunes through Peru, Bolivia and Argentina over the next two weeks.“We haven’t had a lot of time to test,” he said. “But you can see that we have a thirst to learn.”Villas-Boas is not the first football figure to take his chances in the Dakar.Real Madrid’s Raymond Kopa raced in the 1985 event when it was still staged in Africa, as did former French national coach Michel Hidalgo in 1991.“Motorsport has been a passion in my family for a long time. My dad took me to watch Formula One Grands Prix and world rally championship races when we lived in Portugal,” said Villas-Boas.“Of course, football is my job. Motorsport is for leisure but it brings me a lot of happiness.”Villas-Boas, who worked alongside Mourinho at Porto and Chelsea before the two fell out, said he intends to work again in Europe, where he last coached when in charge at Zenit St Petersburg in Russia from 2014-2016.But for the next two weeks his focus is on rallying, not football.With the Portuguese flag proudly draped at the back of his car, his goal is simple — to finish the Dakar when it reaches Cordoba in Argentina on January 20.“I want to enjoy this mixture of nature and racing, that’s what attracted me to it.”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)