Guyana host tripartite conference on health care in border regions

DPI, Guyana, Thursday, November 9, 2017

The Indigenous Peoples in Border Region, Amazon Cooperation Treaty Organisation (ACTO) technical meeting, got underway on Wednesday evening, with a mini cultural show at the St Ignatius Benab, Lethem, Region Nine.

Minister of Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs, Sydney Allicock addressing the audience at the cultural show at the St. Ignatius Benab.

Minister of Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs, Sydney Allicock and Minister within the Ministry, Valerie Garrido-Lowe Permanent Secretary, Alfred King, representatives from border regions of Guyana Suriname and Brazil, were treated to cultural presentations of dances and songs from the St. Ignatius Ambassadors, Kanuku Rockers and the Butterflies cultural groups. There were also representatives from the Ministries of Health, Foreign Affairs, Communities and the Guyana Police Force (GPF)

The Indigenous Peoples in Border Region technical meeting focuses on the rights of the Indigenous Peoples, with specific emphasis on access to quality healthcare across the border regions of the ACTO member states, Guyana, Suriname and Brazil.

During brief remarks, at the official opening of the meeting at the Amazon Hotel, Minister Allicock noted the importance of such an engagement, even as the people of Region Nine are feeling the effects of major developments, following the declaration of its first town, Lethem.

Minister Allicock pointed out the need for Guyana to ensure all its healthcare facilities are well equipped with trained personnel at the border regions; given that Guyana has over the years, been providing medical assistance to its neighbours.

“…To have the three nations here sends a great message given that the meeting is one that has to do with the health and wellbeing of our Indigenous peoples. Over the past years we have been placed in a position to help persons seeking medical health in the cross borders areas and with the development that is to come, we must be prepared to deal epidemics at our borders,” Minister Allicock explained.

The meeting continued today, with presentations by Guyana, Brazil, and Suriname on their respective Strategic Health Care Strategies. Reports on the health situation in the border regions, with emphasis on the Indigenous peoples, were also presented.

On November 02 and 03, Guyana, for the first time hosted the Amazon Cooperative Treaty Organizations (ACTO) technical meeting on Traditional Knowledge. The regional exchange saw Bolivia, Brazil, Columbia, Equador, Guyana, Peru, Suriname and Venezuela participating and sharing their experiences, and strategies for the preservation of traditional knowledge in the Amazon Region.


By: Synieka Thorne

Ministers of Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs Sydney Allicock and Valerie Garrido-Lowe along with representatives from Suriname and Brazil taking in the performances.

One of the cultural presentations.



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