Flood relief hampers delivered to Region Eight miners

Miners in Black Water St. Elizabeth, Potaro Landing, Rebel Hole, and White Water, Region Eight are the latest to benefit from Government’s flood relief efforts, when Minister of Amerindian Affairs, Pauline Sukhai MP delivered hampers.

The Minister was accompanied by Deputy Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Natural Resources Vishal Ambedkar and Chairman of the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission’s (GGMC) Board of Directors, Jimmy Reece.

Miners at Blackwater who benefitted from the relief hampers

Minister Sukhai told miners that many persons across the country were devastated by the recent floods. While an assessment is yet to determine the extent of the devastation, the hamper distribution is Government’s first intervention to assist those affected.

“The Government is awaiting an assessment report which will provide recommendation to Government on what other measures and actions will be taken to assist the mining sector, so until then we would not be able to commit what might be the measures Government may be taking, but very soon that will be unveiled.”

Minister Sukhai in discussion with a miner

Meanwhile, Ambedkar noted that the ministry is working with the GGMC to host a mining lottery, to give small miners legitimate access to mining lands.

Among the issues affecting miners in the region is the deplorable state of the main access road.

The DPS noted that the inclement weather is hampering works on roads.

Minister Sukhai delivers a hamper to miner Marlon Fraser

“We have a number of contractors given different portions of the work so all of them should commence at the same time and it is expected that they complete these works in a timely manner without compromising the structural integrity,” he said.

He said too that there are provisions in place to resolve issues at Mahdia without having to travel to Georgetown to apply for licenses and process other necessary documentation.

Several miners also expressed gratitude for the support from Government as the flood has impacted their mining activities.

Miner James Rampersaud with his hamper

“The assistance is very great because we are flooded for quite some time and we ain’t work and the expense was climbing on us and this little help is a very great help on many people because some people camp don’t have food, now start back working and what so ever so we are thankful for the minister what she did here today,” said Linton Sim, one of the miners who met with the visiting team at Black Water.

“I’m thankful and much grateful for this visit, to see that the government has paid so much interest in coming so far into the mining sector to see the needs of people in this place,”

Yutiv MaCloud, a shop owner of St. Elizabeth said, “I won’t get sales…why…many days I would see crew sometimes seven persons passing out they say I bruck crew, water high, water coming in we pit, land breaking in, I got this shop here and I can give a word on it because this is what pay me, and when I look and just see people going home every minute it grieves me because I know that when they get pay, I get pay.”

Shop Owner Yutiv MaCloud

Another miner Vernon Collier also expressed gratitude, “I appreciate the effort and the move that y’all made here today because it’s the first time we ever see such move made in this area at least I can speak for this area, so we thank y’all for the effort that y’all put out towards this.”

“It is good, it is well appreciated, I never see this before and I am pleased to see whatever go on,” said Lance Fordyce.

Minister Sukhai noted that Government’s Relief efforts is headed by His Excellency Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali.

The team also took note of the concerns of the miners and promised to address them.