Extractive sector’s Corps of Wardens exploring Dagg Point site

DPI, Guyana, Tuesday, July 10, 2018

The Ministry of Natural Resources’ Corps of Wardens for the extractive sector may soon be operating from a site at Dagg Point in Region Seven, Cuyuni Mazaruni.

According to the Director of Compliance, Derrick Lawrence, the team is currently conducting a reconnaissance to determine the suitability of the site, as an out-of-town location for the corps of wardens.

Director of Compliance, Derrick Lawrence and some of the Corps of Wardens who visited the Dagg Point location.

“We haven’t made a decision yet, but what attracted us to this area is the access to the river. We will be conducting boat patrols regularly, our rivers are very important and from time to time there are illegal mining operations taking place on the rivers,” Lawrence explained.

If Dagg Point is chosen, between 15 and 20 persons will be stationed there. The team would periodically visit and inspect work in many areas within Essequibo and Potaro. Vehicular patrols will also be used to conduct inspections at mining locations and areas where there is wildlife.

“Sometimes there are areas where mines build up all kinds of pollution making it impassable in some cases and in other cases affect communities in the riverine part of the country. Therefore, the corps’ responsibility will be to ensure that there is strict compliance with the laws and regulation governing conservation and the environments and essential to maintaining law and order with the natural resource sector,” Lawrence underlined.

The men and women within the Corps of Wardens were trained by the Guyana Police Force (GPF) and will be patrolling the entire natural resources sector on a regular basis.

The team will also work alongside members of other agencies operating within the sector including the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC), Guyana Forestry Commission (GFC) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) among others.

Lawrence said the team is determined to bring about order and compliance with the Laws of Guyana particularly in the natural resources sector as it does in the urban centres.

Deputy Chief Warden, Oscar King, is delighted to serve his country once again. He told the Department of Public Information (DPI) that he was in the military for a number of years and is grateful for a second opportunity to serve his country.

“I will be gathering information, monitoring and reporting on what’s going and educating the populace on compliance,” King said.

Altavi Atwell from Warden Class Two expressed similar sentiments. She explained that the team has already met with several miners who are willing to comply and are awaiting the information to do so. Atwell said she is happy to help her country in that regard.

“It’s a wonderful experience. You get to see the beauty that Guyana has to offer and you’re also encouraging the green state development strategy. It’s a very exciting and rewarding job.”

The Corps of Wardens was introduced by Minister of Natural Resources, Raphael Trotman to tackle the illegal activities and non-compliance issues in the expanding extractive sector.

By: Ranetta La Fleur.