President orders inquiry into death of two children in state care

Georgetown, GINA, July 14, 2016

Minister of State, Joseph Harmon, today said that any time a Guyanese life is lost, some inquiry has to be launched because Government places a very high premium on citizens’ lives.

He said the loss of the lives of the two children who perished in the fire at the Drop In Centre is deeply regretted by government, and President David Granger has ordered an inquiry into the matter. This disclosure was made at a post-Cabinet media briefing today.

According to the Minister of State, President Granger has appointed a commissioner, who will soon be given clear directions as to what the objective of the report should be along with the other details of what the process is expected to be like. A preliminary report is expected no later than July 22.

The Ministry of Social Protection took full responsibility for July 7, fire at the Hadfield Street Drop-in Centre, which resulted in the deaths of Antonio and Joshua George, aged two and six.

The boys and three siblings were taken into state care on July 6 by the Childcare and Protection Agency (CPA), pending investigations into alleged neglect and abuse. Subsequently, the children received medical attention and medical certificates issued confirmed that they were victims of neglect and maltreatment.

 

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