Relief to hurricane-ravaged countries inspected – due to leave by Wednesday

DPI, Guyana, Tuesday, October 03, 2017

Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo and Minister of State Joseph Harmon, were among officials who inspected the shipment of relief supplies to be sent to the Caribbean islands devastated by recent hurricanes, at the Guyana National Industrial Company Incorporated (GNIC)wharf on Tuesday.

Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo addresses the media before inspecting the first shipment of relief supplies.

According to Director of the Civil Defence Commission, Chabilall Ramsaroop, the shipment of about 80 tons contains mostly foodstuff.  “What we are sending here now is mainly foodstuff, tarpaulins, some medical supplies, water and that’s what the countries need immediately.”

According to Ramsaroop, there was an initial plan to send provisions such as plantains and eddoes as well, but this was discouraged. It was pointed out that there was the likelihood of spoilage, due to the length of time it would take to complete the shipping process – which is approximately 10 to 12 days.

Speaking with members of the media, Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo stated that the shipment was a contribution to the cause by Tropical Shipping and the Guyana National Industrial Company Incorporated (GNIC).

“This is part of the continuing effort…we are not done as yet and we’re hoping that other sections of the society particularly the private sector will continue to respond.”

The relief will aid the countries of Antigua, Dominica, and Barbuda.

“The biggest request we had received was for lumber…that is taking a little more time because it requires to package those in one shipment rather than sending them in parts and pieces”, the Prime Minister explained.

He added, “We are committing ourselves to our brothers and sisters in the Caribbean and we hope that our modest effort would be going towards helping to soothe some of their losses and suffering at this point in time”

Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo, Minister of State Joseph Harmon, Director of the Civil Defence Commission, Chabilall Ramsaroop and representative of the Private Sector, Komal Singh in discussions at the GNIC wharf.

Representative of the Private Sector, Komal Singh, said over the past three weeks a lot of support was garnered from the private sector.

According to Singh, the effort is ongoing and for the immediate future, the focus is on the humanitarian needs. He disclosed that “down the line” the private sector may begin selling items to rebuild those countries.

Chief Executive Officer of Guyana National Shipping Corporation, Clinton Williams, said “Tropical and GNIC will continue to do so as they receive cargo from the private sector or anyone interested in helping,” Williams said.

There are three additional containers at the John Fernandes Wharf, while two more are being packed for Antigua, which is the hub for the relief efforts.

Apart from supplies, the government of Guyana has also donated US$100K to the countries affected by the recent hurricanes.

The shipment will leave for Antigua by Wednesday.


By: Natasha Smith