Dear Editor,It is good that American Airlines (AA) will operate in Guyana from December, and break the stranglehold Caribbean Airways (CAL) has on our necks.American Airlines’ flights will be a tremendous boost for local businesses. More competition among airlines means we will get better service for our hard-earned dollars.For example, Caribbean Airlines allows passengers only one free suitcase of 50 lbs, and bills them US$30 for every additional suitcase. But AA’s baggage allowance will be two free pieces of checked luggage of 50 lbs each.AA will be using modern Airbus A319 planes for Guyana flights. These planes have wide leather seats, in-flight entertainment, WIFI access and USB ports.Make no mistake: American Airlines’ flying to Guyana will be a beautiful thing. I support it, I bless the thought. In fact, I hope AA will soon start flying the Guyana-New York route, or from here to London and Europe via Barbados or some other Caribbean territory.American Airlines’ flying here in December is a smart move, because that is when the new airport is slated to open. Our oil-and-gas industry will begin to accelerate, and obviously there will be more travellers to and from Guyana.Some uninformed people are cursing the thought of AA flying to Guyana. They do not understand the airline business, and discuss it without understanding the issue at hand.They are bawling that Caribbean Airlines served Guyana in good times and bad, and we should be grateful.I have nothing personal against Caribbean Airlines. I am a frequent flyer, and I have enjoyed the service of Caribbean Airlines’ cabin crews; but, for a long time now, the airline’s management has been treating us with contempt, and it is good that AA will shake them up big time.CAL stuck with us when other airlines left, but they also took advantage of us. Don’t forget that Caribbean Airlines jacked up air fares and made us pay through our noses when our economy was almost dead; which affected our mentality, our self-esteem and our livelihoods.I would like to compliment Minister of Business, Dominic Gaskin; Minister of Tourism, Cathy Hughes; and Minister of Public Infrastructure, David Patterson, for working to get American Airlines to fly to Guyana. But why was American Airlines able to announce flights to Guyana before getting permission? It looks like AA is calling the shots. This makes Guyana look bad and weak. Guyana is an independent nation with sovereign rights over its airspace. We cannot accept any big company coming from outside to make policies for our country.It was presumptuous of American Airlines to announce flights to Guyana before getting the go-ahead from Government. Guyanese have to get their act together and take control. No one has a right to make policies for the Government and people of Guyana without our involvement.I am a maniac for Guyana’s development, regardless of which administration rules. We have to demand respect when we do business. That is the way we have to deal with American Airlines and any foreign corporation or airline. I don’t like the fact that American Airlines announced flights to Guyana before getting permission, but I still support AA flying here.It is also good that Government is welcoming AA, whether or not it knew up front that the airline had decided to fly here. May this be the dawn of a bright new day for air travel in Guyana.Sincerely,Roshan Khan Snr
Dear Editor,After numerous concerns have been bombarding the media about the escalation of crime around Stabroek Market and the minibus parks, the presence of uniformed Police in collaboration with the City Constables seems to be a welcome sight to commuters/shoppers around the environs.On their first day, they seemed effective; however, after that, things seemed to return to normalcy, with everyone complaining of blatant robberies being committed daily. Notably, on the first day of their operations, various suspicious characters could be seen being stopped and searched and many were taken to the outpost. Indeed, the operation is a great relief to many and I had hoped it would have continued, as plain clothes officers were also present.Whilst the officers are conducting their duties, many persons are hostile towards the officers, especially teenagers who seem to not fear the uniformed authority, using expletives towards the officers. My assumption is that they tell themselves they are being wronged, and their ignorance overcome them. For too long the Stabroek Market and various parks have become a training ground for aspiring criminals and a sturdy plan should be put in place to combat this nonsense. Many people – including conductors, taxi and bus drivers – are of the opinion that the City Constables and Police knows the criminals. I personally see illicit drugs openly being used. More than once, school children in uniform could be seen at the park liming after 22:00h. Whenever a crime or a fight takes place, they are rushing with the crowds, either to assist a crime or commit a crime. I wonder if parents care about their children’s future? Today we are hearing about the number of children dropping out from school and taking part in crime.Editor, over the years, whenever Parliament is in session, traffic gets congested, causing tremendous traffic build-up all around Georgetown. I see no reason why the environs around Parliament have to be barricaded. It’s understandable that the front of Parliament should be so that the Members of Parliament (MP) have easy access and many of the MPs seem to have no sympathy for the stress commuters go through; they are just concerned about enjoying the perks attached to the position they inherited and seem hell-bent on abusing it.Some of their vehicles are heavily tinted and even though there is adequate parking space in Parliament and opposite Parliament Building, their vehicles are being parked in all kinds of manner on the road. That wasn’t so prevalent under the People’s Progressive Party/Civic. Whenever there’s Parliament, traffic is diverted in all directions and interestingly, motorists are forced to venture into areas that unsafe, but they have no other option.Heavy-duty vehicles, including container trucks carrying containers are forced to traverse around Demico House which causes tremendous traffic congestion and daily occurrences of accident because of the taxis and buses parked around the area. It’s like a bottleneck with tight turns for the trucks.Finally, Editor, whenever the traffic becomes congested as a result of Parliament, commuters on Lombard Street are being robbed due to the confusion. The Police are either inept to combat this situation or like what is happening. Many criminals head for Leopold or D’Urban Streets, and there aren’t many exits from Lombard Streets, yet the Police cannot catch these criminals when they commit a crime.It’s really sad to know that people are being robbed of their hard earned dollars due to the confusion that is created by a few who seems to be drunk most of the time and prefer to enjoy the Good Life in Parliament. When will these issues be address properly? Don’t they have vision or are they just towing the line?Sincerely,Sahadeo Bates
the Education Ministry has indicated that it is prepared to have discussion with the Guyana Teachers Union (GTU) to address the challenges faced by public school teachers, specifically the recent allegations of ill treatment meted out by Regional Education Officers (REOs).This was according to Chief Education Officer Olato Sam, who informed Guyana Times on Monday during a telephone interview that the Ministry is open to discussions with the Union to have the cases raised and analysed so that solutions can be derived.This came as the union and teachers are protesting the ill treatment of public school teachers, who are reportedly being harassed by their REOs in Regions Three (Essequibo Islands-West Demerara) and 10 (UpperChief Education OfficerOlato SamDemerara-Berbice).However, he additionally reported that thus far, the Ministry has not received any reports by the Union with regard to the issues raised by the teachers at the Union’s conference last week.“They never actually brought these reports to the Ministry’s attention. The Union could bring the cases and we will have those addressed but so far, they haven’t done that,” Sam affirmed.The Chief Education Officer further stated that the there are specific dates on which the Union meets with the Ministry to have current issues discussed and addressed, noting that the GTU is welcomed to have the current matter presented at the meeting.Following a meeting last week between public school teachers and the GTU, the topic of ill treatment by REOs was brought to the fore for discussion.According to the Union during an interview with this publication last week, the teachers had vented their frustration at the manner in which the Region Three and Region 10 REOs were running the education sector of those regions and violating the rights of teachers, as well as being disrespectful.On the list of issues affecting the teachers due to the inefficiency of the REOs, who are placed in the position by the Ministry to overlook the educational affairs of the various administrative regions, was the manner in which teachers are spoken, to as well as the lack of proper communication to discuss matters.Matters relating to leave passage and transferrals to other departments and schools were also raised at the meeting. The Union had described this nature of action against the teachers as being “worst than slavery.”The teachers had indicated that this is not only a burden to them in terms of a reduction in their productivity level, but also for the students who will be indirectly affected by the ill treatment.As such, the Union appealed to the Education Ministry to immediately intervene so that the ill treatment against the teachers could be eliminated.Meanwhile, REO of Region Three, Penelope Mackintosh, had denied having knowledge of information pertaining to the issue. She had informed that she is oblivious to the allegations and had not gotten reports about the administration being fingered in the matter.All attempts to contact Region’s 10 REO were futile since she was out of office.
…to address rape, violenceFrom time immemorial, rape has been a major challenge for countries across the world. Guyana is no different, and like many nations, it has waged a full-on battle against the scourge, a cancer that threatens the moral and social fabric of our society.In this vein, social activists are deepening conversations internationally and locally on sexual harassment, rape and violence in all its forms. Several rights activists have spoken publicly on the need to raise more awareness on these human rights violations.Social activist,Dr Raquel Thomas-CaesarDr Raquel Thomas-Caesar, a tropical forest ecologist by profession, is an avid human rights activist and member of the Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), Citizens Against Rape and she shared her views on the rape culture and how it is linked to sexual harassment.“I find that there is a lot of excuses from men and some women about how women are treated when they walk down the road, even in the office; many women experience sexual harassment, so along with the rape culture, there’s this sexual harassment thing. It’s just not acceptable,” she stressed.Dr Thomas-Caesar is not discounting the fact that men were also victims to rape and sexual harassment and believes that more needs to be done to protect all victims of these unacceptable behaviours. Workplaces, she said, need to adequately address the issue of sexual harassment by implementing stringent measures to deal with perpetrators. The social activist said that “many offices really need to be aware how to deal with this issue, because rape, it is something that is facing our society, that we have to deal with.”She stressed the need for a number of measures to be put in place, among them more counsellors at schools, community support groups and awareness campaigns in all the regions, particularly in far-flung areas. The call was reiterated for there to be specially trained Police Officers to handle sensitive cases. “They need to have psychology training, as well as counselling training,” she said.Further, Dr Thomas-Caesar called for legislative changes to ensure that victims of rape and other sexual crimes are given swift justice.With the proliferation of violence and rape in Guyana, the social activist is calling on all Guyanese to do their part and move beyond dialogue.Dr Thomas-Caesar added: “We can’t just mouth up…we need to translate that into action and we need to get to our children because that is the way to change this culture.” (DPI)
A labourer who had been accused of raping a school teacher at her Corentyne home between November 2 and 3, 2017 was on Monday set free by a mixed Berbice jury.The 7-5 male majority jury returned the verdict after more than two hours of deliberation.Rape accused: Sunil SundarSunil Sundar of Yakusari, Black Bush Polder had been accused of raping the teacher.During the trial State Prosecutor Mondel Moore called seven witnesses, including four Police officers, the victim and her husband.The victim related the incident to the court, telling that on the night in question she heard the door open and thought it was her husband. It was shortly after midnight she recounted.The woman detailed to the court the heinous act, and also told the court that when Sundar had left, she reached for a cellular phone and realised that it was stolen.She also told the court she was able to inform relatives and also name the perpetrator.The woman’s husband told the court that he and Sundar were working in the backdam and were having a drink. He related that Sundar disappeared and never returned.The prosecution’s case was that Sundar left the woman’s husband in the backdam and went to the house, knowing that the woman was alone at home.Initially, upon his arrest, Sundar had admitted to the act, claiming that it was consensual.In an unsworn statement, he repeated the story to the court, and claimed that as he was leaving the house, the woman saw two of his friends and it was then she claimed that she was raped.The victim did not go into the courtroom to hear the verdict, but remained outside. Following the not-guilty verdict, she broke down in tears.Her father told this newscast that the judicial system is unfair. “I feel very bad; very, very bad. The decision is not right, if a person gets rape, and you go through all that process to have the accused to go before the court, and then at the end of it he gets off.”He says the decision means that the lives of other females are in danger, as he pointed out other incidents as he referred to Sundar.Meanwhile, Sunar was taken back to the New Amsterdam prison, where he is on remand for a break-and-enter charge. That matter is engaging the attention of the Magistrate’s Court.
Linden-Lethem road conditionEven as the minibus operators who ply the Mahdia to Georgetown route were forced to park their buses due to the deplorable condition of the only access road, road users on Wednesday took to social media calling on the President and Ministers responsible to intervene in order to bring a long-term solution to their plight.A bus operator, whose minibus was stuck on the trail for several hours on Wednesday morning, posted a video of the dilemma and blasted the Government for their clear lack of concern or interest in the citizens of this country.The man, (name withheld) lambasted Government for heavy taxes they are enforcing on citizens and questioned what is being done with taxpayers’ monies.“What y’all doing with the taxpayers’ money? It is not right; this is an injustice to humanity for the Ministers to be enjoying the benefits of taxpayers’ money while the taxpayers suffering tremendously. There is no consideration for the people,” he argued.He urged the relevant authorities to seek new ways of tackling this issue and suggested that they offer contracts to small contractors, giving them responsibility for sections of the road and holding them accountable for ensuring the job is done and maintained at a proper standard.“They should consider this and make sure the contractors put a visible signboard with all relevant information so people will see who is doing the work and give and they should give a warranty. It would seem as if it’s a conspiracy with these contracts,” he added.The operator called on the Public Infrastructure and Communities Ministers to look into the situation urgently while calling on President David Granger to use his office to address the wrongdoings in those Ministries.“How long more we gotta suffer… I’m begging Mr Granger please use your office to see what is going wrong and what is going right and address it because there are more wrongs than right and because of these Ministers’ attitudes, development can’t come about,” the operator stated in the video.Other minibus operators who ply the routes were forced to halt their services until the weather pattern and the state of the road improves. The road, according to the operators, is almost impassible as a result of the persistent heavy rainfalls.On Monday, minibus owner Calvin Drakes told Guyana Times that his driver was forced to park the bus because the road had become worse over the past few days. This was the case with at least four other operators who said they cannot continue to operate given the circumstances.Mayor of Mahdia, David Adams had said there have been no improvements in the condition of the road and although the rehabilitation of the road does not fall under his council, no works can be done due to the persistent rainfall.Adams last week explained that during the rainy season, some attention needed to be paid to the trail between Mahdia and Mabura, which is in dire need of repair works.He noted, however, that there are no plans in place for such rehabilitation works by the council.The minibus operators, since last week, have complained bitterly of the deteriorating condition of the trail which they are forced to use to transport passengers and goods as a means of earning their daily bread.They described the trail as a “death trap” and bashed the Public Infrastructure Ministry for paying zero interest in conducting long-term repairs to that trail which is the only access to those areas.The trail has been in a deteriorated state for years and worsens during the rainy seasons after which minor substandard repairs are done on certain patches and the problem continues to recur.To date, there has been no response from the Public Infrastructure Ministry to this issue and efforts to get a comment from Minister David Patterson proved futile.
160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger promised that moving up the state’s primary election to February would put California at the center of the presidential political world and, so far, he has proved to be correct. Among Democrats, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York is planning a major Hollywood fundraiser, pushing to raise more than the $1.3million collected by rival Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois last month. Former Sen. John Edwards, Rep. Dennis Kucinich of Ohio and New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson also have been frequent visitors looking to raise money for their campaigns. The five, along with Sen. Chris Dodd of Connecticut, also are scheduled to attend the California Democratic Party convention next month in San Diego – an event normally shunned by national political types. Republicans also have been turning up in droves – from Sen. John McCain of Arizona and former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani to a less-heralded visit by former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. With all the attention on California, however, has come pressure for officials to declare their support for a candidate. Most local officials are taking their cue from Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and playing it cool when it comes to endorsements, preferring to wait to see what inducements might come in the future. But all this interest from candidates comes at a time when Californians are apparently less interested in politics. The most recent figures from the Secretary of State’s Office show just 69percent of residents are registered to vote, nearly 1million fewer than two years ago. With growing confidence that his candidates will win in the upcoming Los Angeles Unified School board elections, Villaraigosa is toning down some of his rhetoric as he looks to reform the district. “I am looking to be a partner with the school district,” Villaraigosa told business leaders last week at a United Way breakfast. “A lot of what you have heard about me wanting to take control of the school district came from the media. What I am interested in is working with the school board.” At the same time, the mayor is planning to spend $1million more for Tamar Galatzan and Richard Vladovic in their board races. And he said he will continue to appeal to the courts to push through legislation that would limit the board’s role and give him direct authority of three clusters of schools. Villaraigosa will have a chance to talk about his partnership plans this week with Superintendent David BrewerIII and school board President Marlene Canter when the three are in Washington, D.C., as part of a lobbying trip organized by the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce. The three will be singing from the same songbook this time as they seek more federal funds for education. Last week marked the return of Richard Alarcón to the Los Angeles City Council – just in time for him to watch the appointment of former rival Cindy Montañez to the city Planning Commission. Montañez, a former assemblywoman from the San Fernando area, moved into Los Angeles and had sought the City Council seat being vacated by Alex Padilla after he was elected to the state Senate. Montañez dropped out of the race when Alarcón – who had originally endorsed her – decided to run for the seat himself. And in the category of “Don’t let your hyperbole get in the way”: Councilman Tom LaBonge was boisterously endorsing a St. Patrick’s Day parade in downtown Los Angeles and boldly predicting its growth. “This isn’t the Hollywood Christmas Parade yet, but it will be some day,” LaBonge said. The Hollywood Chamber of Commerce pulled its sponsorship of the Christmas parade last week. firstname.lastname@example.org (213) 978-0390
‘Clearly Rodgers knows more about injuries than Hodgson’ – Twitter reacts to latest Sturridge blow 1 The news the striker is facing up to another four weeks out has rocked Liverpool, and amused plenty of others…
FEATURES: The Road Safety Authority Interactive Shuttle visited St Columbas College on Tuesday 10th November. This initiative was part of their Green Schools “Travel” theme.Transition Year students from the school visited the exhibition trailer where they experienced different aspects of road safety using simulators.They were exposed to different scenarios from obeying road signals to speed and reaction times when driving and coming to a stop in various road and weather conditions.The importance of wearing a seat belt correctly was also highlighted. Students had the opportunity to experience what it is like to be in a car which turns upside down through 360 degreesYoung people and indeed all of us need constant reminding of the dangers on our roads and how fragile we all are.Think safety and respect all road users.ROAD SAFETY ROAD SHOW AT ST COLUMBA’S COLLEGE was last modified: November 11th, 2015 by Mark ForkerShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Features
Superb Mark English arrived on the world stage after claiming a brilliant bronze medal in the 800 metres at the European Championships.Superb run by Mark EnglishThe 21 year old Letterkenny man ran a season’s best in a time of 1.45.03 to claim the medal.The UCD student almost clinched a silver medal but was pipped in the last five metres by the Polish athlete Artur Kuciapski. His run was just two hundreds of a second outside the all-time Irish record which will surely be in his grasp in the coming months.English timed his run to perfection and was sitting in fifth with just two hundred metres to go.Sonia O’Sullivan said English ran such an intelligent race.“You could sense that if he didn’t go too soon he could hold on. It was absolutely fantastic. We new he had it in him but you still have to go out and do it. “People don’t understand how difficult it is to get one of these medals. To come out and do what he did was absolutely amazing,” she said. BRILLIANT, BRILLIANT ENGLISH CLINCHES BRONZE MEDAL IN EUROPEAN FINAL was last modified: August 16th, 2014 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:bronzedonegalEUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIPSmark english