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  • CBL Auctioned US$26M to Businesses

    first_imgOne of the major functions of central banks across the globe is to manage the foreign reserves of countries and to intervene in the market to ensure price stability. For an economy like Liberia, which has a dual currency regime, continuous market intervention by the central bank is critical to maintaining not only price stability, but to guarantee a good marketplace for the use of the two legal tenders. The Liberian dollar is challenged with the lack of smaller (L$1 and L$2 dollars) denominations and so, unlike the United States dollars which has, the smallest denomination of the Liberian currency in circulation is the L$5 bill.Amidst these challenges, however, the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL) is fulfilling its mandate day-in-day-out. The Bank, in fulfillment of one of its key functions of continuous market interventions, has announced that it auctioned US$26 million to businesses in the 2nd Quarter of 2013. According to the Bank’s Financial &Economic Bulletin covering April-June, the total amount of foreign exchange sold in the quarter ended June, 2013 was US$26 million. The CBL made this market intervention to stabilize the foreign exchange rate between the US and the Liberian dollars and to lessen the US dollars demand by businesses. Though the US$26 million was slightly (1.1 percent) lower than the US$26.3 million auctioned by the Bank during the first quarter, the Bank noted that the amount represents a significant intervention during the quarter. The CBL noted that an annualized comparison shows that total foreign exchange sold during the reporting period rose by US$1.7 million or 7.0 percent, from US$24.3 million recorded in the corresponding quarter of 2012.T-Bills as Strong Money Market InstrumentOn May 2, 2013, the CBL issued the government of Liberia’s (GOL) Treasury bills (T-bills) in the economy with an initial amount of L$149.0 million offered. A T-Bill is a short-term debt obligation backed by the GOL with a maturity of less than one year. T-bills are sold in denominations of L$1,000 up to a maximum purchase of L$5 million and commonly have maturities of one month (four weeks), three months (13 weeks) or six months (26 weeks). T-bills are issued through a competitive bidding process at a discount from par, which means that rather than paying fixed interest payments like conventional bonds, the appreciation of the bond provides the return to the holder. The GOL’s T-bills auction held in June of this year brought to two, the number of monthly T-bills issued, which is exclusively conducted in Liberian dollars. The CBL has insisted that it is issuing GOL T-bills with a view to enhance wider use of the Liberian dollars and help improved the profitability of banks, given that the commercial banks are the only participants at the moment bidding at the monthly T-bills auction. The CBL disclosed that first the T-bills issued matured in August, 2013 and was redeemed. “The level of oversubscriptions reported during the May and June auctions (L$149.8 million and L$110.6 million), respectively reflect the current high level of excess liquidity in the banking system,” the CBL noted in its Bulletin. Meanwhile, the CBL has announced that currency in circulation decreased by 0.62 percent to Liberian dollars eight billion one hundred forty seven million two hundred thousand (L$8,147.2 million) at end-June, from Liberian dollars eight billion one hundred ninety seven million seven hundred thousand (L$8,197.7 million) recorded at end-March, 2013. According to the CBL, the reduction was on account of a 3.0 percent fall in currency outside banks to Liberian dollars six billion four hundred seventy four million seven hundred thousand (L$6,474.7 million), from Liberian dollars six billion six hundred seventy two million four hundred thousand (L$6,672.4 million) recorded during the preceding quarter. On the other hand, the Bank disclosed, yearly comparison shows that currency in circulation increased by 13.6 percent, compared with the Liberian dollars seven billion one hundred seventy three million five hundred thousand (L$7,173.5 million) reported for the same period a year ago.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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  • 66 SMEs Get Skills Training in Finance

    first_imgSixty-six registered Liberian-own small and medium size enterprises (SMEs) from across the country have completed skills training in basic entrepreneurship in Monrovia.The training exercise took place at the Liberian Business Registry office on Snapper Hill. It was hosted by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry and the US Agency for International Development (USAID) with funding from the Liberian Investing for Business Expansion (IBEX).Madam Watchen H. Bruce, IBEX-Chief of Party, spoke to journalists at the workshop and said the program is aimed at training entrepreneurs how to access finance from various banking institutions as well as keep proper records of their businesses.This training, Madam Bruce said, would help business people understand how to make a profit and also make them understand what the bank requires from them to access a loan.IBEX-Chief of Party told Journalists that IBEX is USAID Liberia’s program and is being implemented by the International Executive Service to Corp (IESC) that supports SMEs in accessing commercial bank financing in the country.She further explained that the program performs due diligence on perspective enterprises before making any recommendations to the banks on behalf of the project.Madam Bruce added that as part of USAID’s effort to improve Liberian businesses and to have access to private sector finance, the training is paramount to them.“We want to make sure that Liberian businesses get loans from banking institutions,” she said.The program focuses on promising entrepreneurs who have track records of successful operations while providing them with technical assistance and capacity building.The program also provides technical assistance and capacity building for bank staff to adapt processes and acquiring the requisite skills that would enable them to review and evaluate borrowers’ loan applications and understanding of banking with farmers and SMEs.She said that the key component of their (IBEX) program is the development of sustainability and exit strategies through a national business development and advisory center staffed with service providers to continue SME funding and business development support services after the workshop.For her part, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Exotic Travel Tours and Documentation, Mrs. Karty Wonasue-Wilson, lauded IBEX and the Ministry of Commerce for organizing a workshop for entrepreneurs in the country.“I appreciate this opportunity because it is free of charge and provides with knowledge for the future. We give our thanks to the organizers,” she said.Mrs. Wonasue-Wilson said that the workshop would expose them to the business community and how they sustain the economy of Liberia.According to the CEO of Exotic Travel Tours, they learned about customer service relationships and record keeping of businesses as well as accessing finance from financial institutions.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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  • Arson Attack on Monrovia School Leaves Students, Parents in Despair

    first_imgStudents and parents of the Apostolic Foundation in Sinkor, Monrovia are expressing frustration and doubt over the fate of the school following arson attack that entirely destroyed one side of it.Speaking on the campus of the burnt school on May 12, 2014, both students and parents expressed that the attack has caused a major setback in their lives at such a critical juncture in the academic year, considering the administering of the West African Examinations.One of the parents, Helen Juwoe who had just completed payment of her son’s tuition the afternoon before the attack expressed her discouragement: “This is very bad and I am discouraged.  I just completed my son’s tuition yesterday and I came here and met this thing.  I feel very bad about it.”Juwoe said considering the situation in the school now, she is planning to transfer her child to another school because others may imitate the perpetrator, leading to other copycat attacks.Regarding the upbringing of students, which is alleged to be responsible for the act, Juwoe said parents cannot be blamed for the unwholesome behavior of children nowadays because they have their own ways in them.According to her, most children in the country take in drugs and they behave the way they do even against their own parents.She did not state whether she has seen any child using drugs; however, she indicated that it is an open secret in Liberia that drugs (narcotics) are available everywhere and users among the youth are increasing in number.Student Ezekiel Bachue, student council president in an interview said the incident is regrettable and it puts their entire academic year in limbo.He said while the problem affects Apostolic Foundation at the moment, it is noteworthy to consider that it is not for Apostolic alone but for others because it could be them too.He also said about one thousand students are attending the school, and if they can be out of school, it is a setback to the literacy rate of Liberia.It is yet to be established who committed this act; nevertheless, sources in the school have told this paper that a student has been arrested in connection to the act.Speaking on behavior of students of today, student Bachue said after war most students are traumatized and need rehabilitation; but because they are not, they might get caught up in situations such as that which recently occurred.Student Morris Massalay, also speaking to this paper, said that it was disappointing to him especially, for one of his fellow school mates to be allegedly connected to the act, which he said has undermined their struggle for education.According to him, most of his peers and academic colleagues are engaged in taking in drugs and violent activities, and government needs to design strategies to get them out.He said the problem does not only exist at the Apostolic Foundation but in all other schools.Meanwhile, the Apostolic Foundation administration has remained tight-lipped on disclosing the perpetrator of the act as police are still investigating the incident.The Principal, A. Darkpay Johnson speaking to the Daily Observer Monday morning said police has arrested one individual believed to be a student of the school, and it is probable that he will name collaborators who set the school ablaze.Mr. Johnson said as a result of the arson attack, documents belonging to students and teachers, books for the library, computers, and other essential documents were all destroyed.Though he was not specific, Mr. Johnson said some students, because of behavioral problems, have been suspended while others were given an “NTR” (Not To Return, expulsion).Sources told this paper that those connected to the alleged arson attack are students who for irregularity in school and unwanted behavior were not allowed to sit for WAEC and expelled from the school.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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  • ‘More Confirmed Cases of Ebola in Cape Mount’

    first_imgGrand Cape Mount has reported an alarming upsurge of the deadly Ebola virus with 49 new cases registered so far.The Head of the Incident Management System (IMS) and Assistant Minister for Preventive Services at the Ministry of Health, Tolbert Nyenswah, making the disclosure yesterday at the office of IMS in Monrovia, said that of the 49 new cases reported, 27 were confirmed, 13 suspected and 9 probable, putting Cape Mount in the Red County Category second to Montserrado in the country.Describing it as unfortunate, Minister Nyenswah attributed the increase to migration of people suspected of the virus and the continuous denial by some residents that people are dying of the Ebola epidemic in the country.According to the Minister, many people are still observing traditional and cultural practices, which undermine the fight against the deadly Ebola virus and stifle efforts made by the IMS and other international and local partners.  “We have people still traditionally preparing the dead body before burial and secret burials are still taking place in the county causing the spread of the virus. We need to desist from these (practices) with the deadly Ebola virus still threatening,” he stressed.There is a high level of complacency and gross disregard for the preventive measures that were laid down by the Ministry of Health and its partners to contain the spread of the Ebola virus, he said.Minister Nyenswah reported that people in Cape Mount were not observing constant hand-washing with soap and chlorine solution. He said that they are also keeping sick people in their communities, getting in close personal contact with them and often do not report suspected Ebola cases.With the alarming number of new cases in the county, the IMS and its partners will open the Ebola Treatment Unit in Sinje and move in with more ambulances and health workers to ensure that the situation is put under control.“We are also installing new Labs in the next two weeks to have more people tested. We will also carry out a massive mobilization of partners to support the county health team in ensuring the IMS does not have any problem of containing this outbreak in the county,” Minister Nyenswah added.The Minister disclosed further that the 49 reported cases from Cape Mount have generated over 200 contacts in and outside of the county, which he said needed urgency to contain the situation. He appealed to local residents to work with health practitioners to address the problem.Monsterrado County remains the hotspot of the Ebola Virus Disease, but the IMS and partners are working to ensure that ‘zero new cases’ is achieved and Liberia is declared Ebola free, he said.He added that Nimba, which has not reported any case for the past 63 days, has now reported one new case, but the IMS is working to guarantee that all measures are put in place to handle the situation there.The Minister emphasized that only behavioral change of every Grand Cape Mount citizen and resident will help to stop the spread of the virus, stating that everybody needed to adhere to all the preventive measures to break the transmission of the Ebola disease.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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  • Single sourcing of medication

    first_imgDear Editor,On the August 8th, 2018, I wrote a letter pointing out that something stinks with the HDM Labs / Ministry of Public Health deal. At the time, it was widely believed that the HDM Labs contract valued at $366,826,660.8 GYD or ($1,789,886 US). I asked the Minister of Public Health Hon. Volda Lawerence several questions in parliament. To date, she has refused to answer. But the latest report from the Auditor General dated 31st December 2017, has now confirmed HDM Labs Inc. received a contract valued at $409.497 million on the 31st of August 2017- much more than was previously quoted.In a statement to parliament on the 18th July 2018, Minister Lawerence claimed that only three of the six companies submitted bids. The Auditor General report has identified these companies as IPA, Caribbean Medical Supplies and Ansa McAl Trading. Each of these companies has been regular suppliers to the Ministryimage descriptionof Public Health. But on this occasion, their bids were evaluated and rejected. The disqualification of the three bidders in the first round is highly suspicious; many believe that these bidders received unfair treatment. The government should release the findings from the Bid Evaluation Committee for us to understand why these three bidders were disqualified.In the first round, six companies were invited to bid, of these, only three participated. Of the three companies that participated, all were disqualified. The Ministry re-invited the same six companies to retender. The logic behind the Ministry’s action is questionable, unless they had a prearranged outcome. Of the six companies that were invited to participate, only one submitted a bid, that is HDM labs. It is unclear, whether an Evaluation Committee was established to evaluate the HDM Labs’ bid- if so the report of the committee should be disclosed. If there was no evaluation committee, then on what basis was a decision taken to give the award to HDM Labs? From the information that is currently available, it seems that the process was engineered in favour HDM Labs’ favour.This flawed procurement has led to wastage of taxpayers’ dollars. The Auditor General’s report looked at nine items that were bought by this contract. The report compared the price paid to HDM Labs with that of IPA, Caribbean Medical Supplies and AnSa McAl. For this letter, I will compare HDM Labs’, Price with IPA. Please refer the table:From this analysis, it is clear, that IPA had better prices than HDM Labs.In justifying the need for restrictive tendering, a case was made for emergency supplies of medicines. I suppose that based on this evidence the NPTAB agreed to this restrictive method of procurement. The Auditor General’s report pointed out, “The supplier was required to supply the drugs two weeks after signing of the contract; that is all items should have been delivered no later than 22nd September 2017. At[To] this date, no items were delivered, and delivery commenced in October 2017. As of 31st December 2017, items to the value of $141.892 M (35% of the contract price) were delivered. The supplier fulfilled his obligations under the contract in March 2018, that is, six months after the agreed delivery date.”As the Auditor General’s report pointed, out some of the medicines arrived six months after the date of delivery.This deal reeks of corruption. For the nine items that the Auditor General analysed, the government could have saved $166,942,315 million if IPA was used. HDM Labs was required to deliver the drugs in two weeks but took six months. The Ministry of Public Health should explain to the public whether it has taken any action against HDM Labs for failure to deliver as specified in the agreement. The National Tender Procurement and Administration Board (NTPAB) should say whether, based on bad performance on this contract the company would be blacklisted. The Public Procurement Commission should launch an immediate investigation into the multiple breaches of the Procurement Act, and the wastage of taxpayers’ dollars. If the government is serious about corruption, it should call in the police to do a thorough investigation.Sincerely,Dr Frank Anthony, MPlast_img read more

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  • Norway funds to be utilised for more strategic projects – President

    first_imgWhile acknowledging the strides made under the previous Administration with respect to climate change,President David GrangerPresident David Granger said his Government planned to double those efforts and utilise the remaining Norway funds for more strategic projects.“The previous Administration was concerned about Low Carbon Development Strategy and was concerned with the direction of some of the funds to projects which were Amerindian retitling of lands and also regeneration of energy through the Amaila Falls Hydropower Project. We would like to look at climate change more broadly,” Granger stated during a recent broadcast of “The Public Interest”.He noted that the A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change (APNU/AFC) Administration intended to tackle reforestation in mined-out areas, generation of energy apart from hydropower, coastal zone management, and the impacts of El Niño.On reforestation, President Granger explained that the most severely damaged areas were located in Region Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni); Region Eight (Potaro-Siparuni); and Region One (Barima-Waini).In this regard, he said those areas would be given priority in any plan that would be crafted to promote reforestation in the country.Additionally, he said, the vision for renewable energy should not be limited to Amaila Falls and a few handouts of solar panels, but rather huge solar farms that can power an entire community.The President noted too that the previous Administration did not include any measures to deal with coastal zone management, something he intended to correct since sea defence was an area of vulnerability for Guyana.Given that El Niño is a cyclical weather pattern that affects certain parts of the country, President Granger said he wanted to develop a plan to deal with the impacts of the weather phenomenon.While nothing concrete has been crafted, the aim is to have reservoirs for water in areas that are gravely affected by the drought, particularly the Rupununi areas, he said.“The problem of energy and environment are much beyond the plans or programmes implemented by the previous Administration. We have a wider view, a longer view, a strategic view,” he stated.He posited, “It’s not just about land titling, it’s not just about Amaila Falls, it is about making sustainable energy available to a wider part of the population not just handing out a few solar panels but having whole communities powered by solar energy.”Government has to make a final decision by the end of June on the future of the project or Guyana risks losing the remaining of the US$250 million in funds provided by Norway under the landmark LCDS climate migration deal.last_img read more

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  • High crime rate? Police say serious crime down by 16%

    first_img– 58 people killed on Guyana’s roadsThe Guyana Police Force (GPF) on Monday stated that it has recorded a 16 per cent decrease in serious crimesSuperintendentJairam Ramlakhanat the end of May this year when compared to the same period last year.The Police also highlighted that there was a seven per cent reduction in reports of murder, a 10 per cent decrease in gun-related robberies, and a seven per cent decrease in armed robberies where other instruments were used by the perpetrators.In addition, a 26 per cent decrease was recorded in robberies with violence, a 14 per cent decrease in robberies with aggravation, a 27 per cent combined decrease in break-and-enter-and-larceny and burglary and a 14 per cent decrease in rape.There was also a 52 per cent decrease in larceny from the person. Robberies where guns or other instruments were not used showed an increase of 17 per cent.Police spokesman, Superintendent Jairam Ramlakhan highlighted that the decrease in the crime rate was no doubt as a result of the initiatives taken by the Government of Guyana, the Public Security Ministry and the Police Force to de-escalate the crime situation.He added that the Police were increasingly gaining the public’s trust thus resulting in a higher level of information sharing and the solving and prevention of serious crimes, inclusive of murder. Exposure to training, both locally and internationally, continues to be a top priority at all levels of the Force, the Police spokesman noted.In respect to traffic, the Police Force has recorded an increase in road fatalities. “We have recorded 58 fatalities at the end of May this year, which are 14 more than the same period last year.”The Police in a statement noted that while there was a reduction in serious accidents, there have been again increases in minor and damage accidents.In addition, the Police are cognisant of the fact that speeding, driving under the influence of alcohol and inattentiveness continue to be the main causes of fatal accidents.Thus far, the Police have charged 30,788 persons with traffic offences up to May 31, 2016. This includes 11,302 for speeding and 839 for driving under the influence.The Police Force thanked all of its ranks who have worked to the best of their abilities and in some cases beyond the call of duty during Guyana’s 50th Independence Anniversary celebrations.last_img read more

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  • Department of Tourism to host Guyana Coconut Festival

    first_imgBY: Indrawattie NatramThe coconut industry that has been left behind for quite some time will be under the spotlight in October as the Department of Tourism in the Ministry of Business in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture and private stakeholders will be hosting a Coconut Awareness Week during 15 to 23 October, 2016 with a wide range of events.The Week’s events will highlight the importance of coconut and its uses. According to Director General of Tourism Donald Sinclair a River Appreciation Day and Speed Boat parade along with a Ministry of Agriculture outreach will start the activities.The activities include a coconut awareness launch of festival icon, motorcade to Mahaicony ground for World Food Day observance, Launch of Festival Souvenir magazine, Ministry of Agriculture Coconut cook out, State of the Coconut Industry forum, and launch of National Coconut Development Roadmap.A coconut summit and Business meetings is schedule for October 21 at the Arthur Chung Convention Centre, and on October 22 the festival continues with a coco splash entertainment sequence.The week will conclude with a coconut award ceremony on October, 23.At a stakeholders meeting, Sinclair said that farmers from Pomeroon will be actively involved and that Essequibo is an important Region to start off the week’s activities, since Pomeroon is the “Heart of the Coconut”.During his address he said that the industry has been out of attention for a while and it is time for farmers, living in the Pomeroon, to be equipped with the necessary knowledge about the fruit and its many uses.At the meeting, Chairman of the Essequibo Chambers of Commerce, Dalip Singh, and Region Two Chairman Devanand Ramdatt pledged the Region’s support towards the Week’s events. The boat parade will put Essequibo on the map in terms of Tourism, he noted.For the activities, nations such as Suriname, Brazil, India and Mexico have indicated their interest in participating. The Week of activities also coincides with Agriculture Month. The events are to be hosted by the Ministry of Agriculture Maritime Authority, and the Guyana Police Force.last_img read more

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  • Narco trafficking “mother of all crimes” – President Granger

    first_img…says efforts being undertaken to curb illicit tradePresident David Granger has stated that in tackling the mounting crime rate in Guyana, focus should first be placed on dismantling the local drug network, which he believes is the driving force of criminal activities.Speaking on the weekly televised programme ‘The Public Interest’, the Head of State called drug trafficking the “mother of all crimes”, pointing out that most criminal activities stem from the narco trade.The illegal marijuana cultivation discovered by the Police last Thursday at Araray Village, Upper EssequiboAccording to the President, as long as narco trafficking is prevalent, crimes such as gun running, money laundering and execution murders will continue to exist.“…as long as drugs keep coming into this country, it will be very difficult to control crime. Narco trafficking is the mother of all crimes… The huge amount of money that is generated in narco trafficking can be used to order executions, recruit rogues who could carry out crimes (foot soldiers), they can get young people to sell their drugs and they can bribe law enforcement officers,” he stated.Granger mentioned the role narco trafficking has been playing, particularly between 2000 and 2015, in contributing to the country’s crime wave which has been on a consistent high during that period.President David GrangerHe continued explaining that while there is no single answer to curbing the illicit drug trade, emphasis must be placed on the root of drug networks and that is what his administration is working on.The President noted that Government has recognised that narco trafficking is a transnational crime, and that it has the responsibility to ensure that Guyana’s land space and borders are more secure and free from the illicit trade.He mentioned the recent discovery of an illegal aircraft in Region Nine (Upper Takutu-Upper Essequibo) and noted that local law enforcement is yet to establish a connection to the narco trafficking network. However, he stated that while this incident shows how easy it is to illegally get into the country, the discovery of the aircraft shows that local law enforcement is stepping up their ante.Furthermore, the Head of State sought to respond to criticisms that the coalition regime is yet to dismantle any local drug network, reminding that the country’s narcotics situation has been built up over the last 60 years and cannot be easily infiltrated.Nevertheless, President Granger posited that his administration has been taking steps to tackle the drug trade in Guyana, mentioning the creation of the National Anti-Narcotics Agency (NANA) which is headed by retired Major General Michael Atherly and the establishment of the National Security Committee which examines every week the conduct of the Police Anti-Narcotics Unit, the Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA) Anti-Narcotics Unit, as well as the Customs Anti-Narcotics Unit (CANU).The President added that these efforts, coupled with interactions with its international partners, particularly the United States Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), will be used to interdict narco trafficking in Guyana. He recalled that Guyana has been partnering with other countries, United Kingdom and Jamaica of recent, in probing major drug busts that have connections here.“So I think (the criticisms are) unfair because we have set up the institutions and I think recently the National Drug Strategy Master Plan has been reissued. We are also now conducting investigations into an aircraft coming into our airspace illegally and we taking other measures to ensure the narco trade is brought to an end,” Granger emphasised.The Head of State further outlined that the country does not have adequate aircraft to patrol the borders; ships to patrol the sea space and vehicles to control the land space; his administration is nevertheless committed to arresting the local drug trade. However, he posited that Guyana is going to adopt extreme measures that other countries, such as the Philippines, has undertaken in tackling narcotics trafficking.The President’s statements came on the heels of the Guyana Police Force highlighting that its anti-narcotics efforts continue to be successful.In fact on Friday at a media briefing, acting Commissioner of Police, David Ramnarine, emphasised that “Our Narcotics Branch has been doing well so far and this substantiates the fact that our narcotics branch is still relevant and important.”He went on to disclosed that over the last three months, a total of 43 kilograms of cannabis, worth a street value of $22 million, was seized. Some 108 persons, including 96 males and 12 females, have since been charged.Additionally, the Police Commander detailed that during the same period, some 102 kilograms of cocaine, with a street value of $92 million, was seized. This resulted in 28 persons, 23 males and five females, being charged.According to Ramnarine, of the 102 kilograms of cocaine, some 90 kilograms alone were seized at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA) from outgoing passengers in three separate cases.On the other hand, the acting Top Cop outlined that the Police Force has also been successful in its eradication efforts. He revealed that during such exercises over the past three months, a total of 21,150 kilograms of cannabis sativa plants were destroyed by fire in the Linden, Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice) area alone.The most recent drug eradication exercise undertaken by the Police was at Araray Village, Upper Essequibo.During the twelve-hour exercise on Thursday last, in excess of nine acres of cultivated cannabis with about 8000 plants, ranging in heights from one foot to 10 feet, several nurseries with over 3000 seedlings and two make-shift tents were found and destroyed.Three males found tending to the cultivation were arrested. They were charged with cultivating prohibited plants and placed before the courts.last_img read more

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  • My body is gold

    first_imgEver tried to break gold?With your own bare hand?Did you feel the stiff?Would you trade gold for brass?Or try to sweep it like some grass?Gold is a precious shiny stone-not a strawMy body –this body you see, is goldI may be short, small or hugeWith my lappa stained with red palm oilSwamped by crying babies in the kitchenOr, I may be carrying my bucket,Filled with pepper, okra, and cornBut with these, I put food on that tableCan’t you see my courage shines like lightening?I may be walking in mud down watersideBut I smile like the bright morning sunDoes that make me a cow that you beat to move?Why do you knock me down and gang rape me like hungry thirsty leopards?Am I sweeter than honey?And you laugh like its funny?You are a coward, cruel and shamelessWhy do you keep me dirty, barefooted and broken?Are you afraid of the radiance in my eyes?Do you fear the glamour of my beauty?Are you struck by the size of  my hips?Are you intimidated by the glow of my breasts?Now, hear me young manThis body you beat is goldAre you a beast, built to beat a woman?If you’re Hercules, why not jump on a lion in his den?Is your prowess fixed for women?But, you don’t know goldSomeday, you’ll see a real manA man with arms thicker than yoursAnd chest wide for my bodyWith voice that vibrates like thunderAnd hands stronger than oxenBut, he, like a knight, guards me like a queenAnd guess what?This man, my man, is a real manLike a miner, he knows gold, even in dirtAnd he cleans it up and sets it in a jarAnd marvels at the splendor-enjoying his treasureBut, you poor manYou were blinded by a ghostNever knew the gold you hadAnd boy, oh boy, when you know thisI’ll flee like a bird and be goneWhen it hits your door, you’d be doneLeft with your over grown egoChained in a cageStuck with your rageDid you think you could dim my bulb?And blow my lambI’ll still be on fireWhen we pass you byRolling your wheelbarrow on the outskirts of dualaYou’ll hide your face behind the mountain’s backWith your torn-out trouseurs, asking in your coloqua-da my woman there?This face you bruise is goldThis nose you punch is goldThis arm you twist is goldThis leg you sweep is goldThis body, my body is gold.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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