‘Off to a bright start’ – Guyana-Suriname Ferry service back in business
– M.B Sandaka will transport passengers until Canawaima Ferry resumes service on October 16
DPI, Guyana, Thursday, September 26, 2019
After the Canawaima Ferry was suspended for four months for much-needed repairs, the M.B. Sandaka that usually works the Parika to Leguan route began to transport passengers from Molsen Creek to Paramaribo, Suriname on Thursday.
Fisherwoman, Amanda Walcott was one of the scores of passengers that boarded the vessel. According to her, the reinstatement of the ferry service is a weight off her shoulders. “I feel proud the vessel is back again this morning because it was more harassing with the little boat… At the end of the day, the ferry is much better,” the fisherwoman told the Department of Public Information (DPI).
Commenting on the resumption of service with the temporary vessel, a painter that resides in Kitty, Ronald Ragnaught stated, “I find it is good for the people… for both sides, Guyana and Suriname so that they can cross with no fear.”
Deputy Superintendent within Canawaima Ferry Incorporated, Deyne Harry provided an overview of the morning’s operations. Describing the reopening as ‘good’, the official noted, “we have had 120 passengers and 5 vehicles. So, we are off to a very bright start.”
Passengers who do not meet the strict travel requirements will not be allowed to board the vessel. These include having a passport with 6 months validity until expiration, and an International Certificate of Vaccination or Prophyulaxis for Yellow Fever.
Sandaka sailed for Paramaribo around 9am, taking approximately 30 minutes. On its return to Molsen Creek, some of the first passengers that disembarked shared their thoughts on the impact of the resumed service on their commute.
Jimmy Chan, a Guyanese residing in Suriname, mentioned that while he had initially planned to return to Guyana on Tuesday through the backtrack, he quickly changed his mind upon learning of the ferry service.
“I decided to wait on it because I know this is much safer than going through the back. Plus, the expenses are more at the back than here… I am comfortable. I am safer. I am satisfied with what the government did. It eases a lot of people.”
An elderly woman named Janet Brown expressed her reluctance to travel through the backtrack, adding that she prefers the ferry and would only utilise the former only if necessary.
On October 16, the Canawaima Ferry will be back in operation.