-As 3,500 youth to beneficiaries for special agricultural activities By George Harris and David A. YatesAs part of efforts to improve the economic status to contribute to food security in the rural parts of Liberia, the Youth Opportunities Project (YOP) recently made additional recruitment of 3,500 youths that are living at a very low-income level.The initiative is a continuation of YOP’s Productive Public Works (PPW) program.According to a release, YOP’s PPW phase-two recruitment exercise was executed for a period of one month across the fifteen counties of Liberia. A total of 129 communities from the fifteen counties were selected during the recruitment process.Recruited youth who are between the ages 18 to 35 will be incorporated into a special agricultural initiative of YOP, the release said.In a follow-up interview, YOP National Coordinator, Jesse Bengu, said that YOP agricultural initiative is designed to increase youth earnings but also enhance their entrepreneurial potentials.“The venture would positively shift and engage their [youth] minds, and promote their ambitions to abandon acts that are counter-productive for society,” Bengu said. “Therefore, in-demand agricultural produce like rice, cassava, eddoes, maize, and vegetables worth paying attention to as it is necessary and would profit those in our program and the nation at large.”Bengu added that his organization is preparing to drill youth through two operational plans that will help them overcome their economic challenges. First, YOP is offering basic planting tools, and cash as labor subsidies to recruited youth that are from rural communities. Secondly, it is building the capacity of recruited youth through basic financial and small-skills business management training.The YOP is implemented by the Ministry of Youth and Sports (MYS) and the Liberia Agency for Community Empowerment (LACE). It is supported by the World Bank with a 10 million dollar loan to the Government of Liberia.The project focuses on Pre-Employment Social Support for urban youth between the ages of 15-17 years, and Household Enterprises for Urban Youth as well between the ages of 18-35.For the Productive Public Works component, the project supports rural youth between the ages of 18-35 years. A total of 15,000 beneficiaries are targeted by December 2020 the end of the project’s five-years term.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
The late Francis Burns Dunbar. – Advertisement – The funeral service of Mr. Francis Burns Dunbar, Sr. will take place on Friday, April 5, 2019 at the S.T. Nagbe United Methodist Church at 13th and 14th Streets, Tubman Boulevard, Monrovia, beginning at 10 o’clock a.m.The body will be removed from the Samuel A. Stryker Funeral Home on Tubman Boulevard at 09:00 o’clock the same Friday morning and taken to the S.T. Nagbe Church.On Saturday, April 6, 2019 at 10 o’clock a.m., the cortege will depart the S.T. Nagbe Church for the Dunbar farm in Palala, Bong County, where interment will take place.Francis Burns Dunbar, Sr., a prominent son of the legendary agriculturist, builder and father, George Augustus Dunbar III, died on Monday, March 18, 2019 at the SOS Clinic on Tubman Boulevard in Sinkor following a period of illness. He was in his 71st year.Mr. Dunbar served the Liberian government in several capacities, including former deputy minister at Finance and former managing director, respectively of the Liberia Produce Marketing Corporation (LPMC) and National Port Authority (NPA).Francis Burns Dunbar was born in Monrovia on December 26, 1948 to the union of Mr. George A. Dunbar III and Madam Kau Quelu Boayue Dunbar of Ganta, Nimba County.He was a graduate of the College of West Africa (CWA). He spent a year at Cuttington College and Divinity School (now Cuttington University), before traveling to the United States. There he obtained the Bachelor’s degree in Economics from Queens College, and the Master’s in Economics from the New School for Social Research in New York (NSSRNY). He later commenced the doctoral program at the NSSRNY, completing all his course work, but for the dissertation.Family sources said he was employed at several companies, including an import/export company in New York.In 1978, he married Ms. Rita Davis and the union was blessed with two sons, Francis Davis Dunbar, and Jason Burns Dunbar. The marriage was dissolved in 1988.He returned to Liberia in the Summer of 1981, and joined the government. During the Liberian civil war, Francis returned to the USA in 1990, and was employed as general manager of New Jersey Transit, a position he held for many years.Francis also married Ms. Shadrene Howard in 1989, and this union was blessed with a son, Stephan Burns Dunbar. This marriage was dissolved in 1993.Mr. Francis Dunbar fathered four other children—Sei Newon, mother Ms. Betty Dokie; Dekonti Putu S., mother Dr. Antoinette Sayeh, former Minister of Finance; Francine, mother, Ms. Frances Mitchel; and Francia Dunbar, mother, Ms. Edwina G. Allison.Survivors include his former wives, Rita Davis and Shadrene Howard; his children, Francis Davis, Jason Burns, Dekonti Putu, Sei Newon, Fancine, Francia and Stephen Burns Dunbar; his grandchildren, Noah and Sara; the Dunbar family; numerous siblings; nieces; nephews; cousins; the Boayue family; other relatives; friends; and business associates.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
P&P Insurance Brokers on Friday donated $1 million to 10 non-governmental organisations that house the less fortunate.This activity has become an annual tradition for P&P Insurance for the past six years and the company sees it as a way of demonstrating the true spirit of giving during the Christmas season.Each of the charitable homes received a $100,000 cheque from Varsha Panday,Varsha Panday (far left) flanked by representatives from all 10 organisations after receiving their chequedaughter of the CEO, Bish Panday, at a presentation held at the P&P Insurance Brokers and Consultants office, King Street, Georgetown.According to the Director of P&P Insurance Brokers and Consultants Limited, Vikash Panday, this has impacted the lives of the less fortunate and they are happy to contribute to the cause and hope that their modest contribution will assist, especially at this time of the year when they would like to give a little more.“…We know a lot of these organisations do a lot of good and we are happy to associate with them… It is not easy to get finances now and we feel this contribution will go a far way towards helping the organisations.”The recipients were Bless the Children Home, Uncle Eddie’s Home, David Rose School for the Handicapped, Bright Horizon Family, the Dharm Shala, the Ptolemy Reid Rehabilitation Centre, Canaan Children’s Home, Friends of the Archer’s Home, Cheshire Homes Guyana and Hauraruni Girls Home.A representative of the Canaan Children’s Home welcomed the donation while stating that it will go a long way towards helping the organisation. “On behalf of the Canaan Children’s Home, we would like to say a heartfelt thank you to the Panday’s, we know that you have been doing this over the years and I pray that God continues to bless your business so that you can continue to give to these children.”
Satiricus was smiling all the way to the Back Street Bar. He and the fellas had looked at the Mash Float Parade on TV this year at their individual homes, and he knew they would be comparing notes. In previous years, they’d all taken their families to look at the jump up and wining, but this year the wives had drawn a line: There were too many robberies taking place, and they weren’t going to take any chances in the hyena’s den!“Budday, wha’ yuh tink?” called out Cappo to Satiricus as he spied him coming. “Abee prappa gat nuff big skin ‘oman, na?”“Me hope yuh notice none a dem na cane-cutta wife,” butted in Bungi. “Dem tu’n prappa maaga since dem husban’ get knack aff.”“Bungi, why you have to look at the glass half-empty again?” complained Satiricus. “We are just celebrating the birth of our Republic, man! Loosen up, nuh!”“But Bungi has a point, Sato,” said Hari as he sipped his beer slowly. “What do we really have to celebrate this year?”“Budday, we became a Republic!” said Satiricus exasperatedly. “What else do you want?”“Yes Hari,” smirked Cappo. “Abee gat plenty big skin ‘oman apart fram cane cutta wife! Wha’ mo yuh want de Republic gat?”“Me want de Republic get jab fuh all dem cane-cuttah de guvment fyaah,” said Bungi doggedly as he disagreed with his friend for once.“Bungi, jobs will come,” said Satiricus with certainty. “We found oil, you know!”“Oil? Oil?” interjected Cappo who stopped skinning his teeth. “Venezuela gat mo ile dan anybaddy in de worl’, an’ all dem big skin ‘oman get fine, fine!!”“That’s what I’m trying to say, fellas,” said Hari patiently. “Venezuela was the first Republic in South America! What has it done for them?”“Dem a come heah in Guyana fuh look fuh jab!” said Bungi triumphantly. “Yuh t’ink dem a flounce about like dem head na good?”“Dem na flounce about beca’se dem na gat any mo big skin ‘oman!” said Cappo triumphantly. “Dem tu’n maaga like abee cane cuttah wife!”Satiricus gave up and started to sip his beer.
Residents of West Coast Demerara (WCD) who experienced flooding after a spring tide pummelled the sea defence structures and caused some breaches are still awaiting the compensation which was promised by Minister of State, Joseph Harmon.The Tuschen/Uitvlugt Neighbourhood Democratic Council (NDC) Chairman Vishal Ambedkar, during an interview with Guyana Times, revealed that a list was created to assess the damages of the flood victims. Losses of the residents tallied to approximately $100 million, and the list was submitted by the Geographical Representative and Member of Parliament (MP), Mohammed Irfaan Ali. However, Minister Harmon had told the residents that compensation would be given when the list was checked to ensure that the assessments were accurate.“We are hoping that the compensation promised from the Minister of State, that these people will be able to return to a life that was as normal or as close to normal that they would’ve had before,” the NDC Chairman noted.Presently, Chairman Ambedkar stated that there has been no feedback from the authorities with regard to the compensation and the list that was submitted by MP Ali.He also noted that if another high tide struck, the villages will be under water again. As such, the NDC will also need financial assistance to cater for unexpected disasters. He stated, “We also recommended that the Government give us additional funding for incidental expenses such as these.” Moreover, persons who were affected by the flood were still waiting on the Government to approve the list so as to replace some of the items they lost during the flood. Others who farm and rear livestock explained that their livelihoods were destroyed and they are in great need of the money. The flood victims related that they were in need of some financial assistance, so as to restore some degree of normalcy to their lives at the earliest.
…says too many complaints piling upWith an increased number of complaints being lodged against staff attached to the Works Department within the Regional Democratic Council (RDC) of Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice), Regional Chairman Renis Morian has threatened to have them removed. While complaints against the department – which is responsible for the overseeing of the region’s infrastructural projects – is nothing new, it came in for more harsh criticism during the hosting of the Council’s statutory meeting last week when staff were accused of corruptive practices and under-productivity.Regional Chairman Renis Morian among Councillors during last week’s statutory meetingThis, according to officials, continues to affect the flow of the system of works in the region. In threatening to remove all of the staff in the department, the Regional Chairman said the Council has been trying to sort out the same issues since 2015, but has seen no change.He said if there is no change by December 31, 2018, the Council will move a motion for the removal of all of the staff within the department. According to Morian, the Council will cite “corruption, friendism” and “nepotism” as grounds for their removal, as he alleged that “kleptocracy” continues.Morian said there are no set systems or structures for dates when projects are checked and staff seem to be acting outside of the interest of getting the work of the Council done. “People going and check their friend work and ain’t checking other people’s work because is not their friend… I’m aware of it because I’m on the ground…We’re moving to a place where I’m going to write the Minister, write the President and say we can’t work with the present staff… they don’t even send the contracts to the Works Committee… that is a prerequisite of this RDC here, before the people (contractors) get paid, works got to sign off. When I go to works (department), people liming, coming in very, very, late. There’s no structure in the Works Department…This RDC here is going to move to a place where we’re going to ask for the whole Works Department to move,” the Chairman told the meeting.Regional Executive Officer (REO) Orrin Gordon also pointed out that he continues to have issues with Bill of Quantities submitted for projects and would have raised these concerns with engineers on the ground. “So that would have obviously slowed down the process… On Monday we would have had a meeting and at the meeting made it clear that we need to move some people out of the line and try and train some other people in line. Because we are not getting the productivity from those individuals,” he said. Additionally, Gordon said there are issues with status reports, which he noted contain a lot of gaps with missing information.“We have to do better than this. There was an instance where a particular line item was overspent, and I said, ‘I can’t remember us doing that amount of work’. And they went back and said there was an error. When we check through the thing, we saw that one project was stated three times,” Gordon continued. However, he also admitted that presently, there are insufficient technical staff to carry out checks to projects with Councillors noting that the issues with the system continues to affect the timely payment of contractors. Back in June, the Council made a unanimous decision to restructure its Works Department. Over the years, the department has come in for high condemnation from Morian and Councillors alike, with some of its members even being accused of fraud. Gordon had also pointed out that the department is a very troubling area and had made calls for the administration to have it reorganised. Several Councillors have also over the years registered their frustration in dealing with issues related to the department.
A 26-year-old construction worker was on Friday released on $250,000 bail by Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan after he was hauled before the court for allegedly raping a 15-year-old girl.Calvin Mann, of Timehri, East Bank Demerara, was not required to plea to the indictable charge, which was read in camera at the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts on Friday.The charge alleged that between August 1 and August 31, 2018, Mann committed the dreadful act on the child without her consent.However, Police Prosecutor Simone Payne objected to bail being granted to the accused while informing the court that the victim and the defendant are known to each other.The Chief Magistrate overruled the prosecution’s submission and granted the labourer his pre-trial liberty. Mann was represented by Attorney Stanley Moore.The case will continue on October 23.
A teenager of Boerasirie, East Bank Essequibo (EBE), was on Wednesday evening attacked and robbed of his motorcycle. The traumatised teen was identified as 18-year-old Kurt Amsterdam.Based on reports received, the teenager stopped his motorcycle in front of a car wash in the village and entered a shop at the same establishment.As he was in the process of parking the vehicle, a white motorcar pulled up alongside him and two men exited. One of them was brandishing a handgun. As the teenager raised an alarm, the man carrying the weapon pointed same to his head and ordered him to “shut up”.At this time, persons from the business establishment who heard the screams made inquiries but no one went to the teen’s assistance.The teen, when contacted, told Guyana Times that he was told to hand over the keys to the motorcycle and out of fear, he complied.He stood helplessly as the other man mounted the motorcycle and rode off the scene. The man carrying the gun then entered the car and followed his accomplice. The matter was immediately reported to the police and an investigation was launched.Up to late Thursday evening, no arrests were made.Meanwhile, just days ago, a Tuschen, EBE man was attacked and robbed of his motorcycle.The man, Keoma McAlmont, 21, said that he was riding from Tuschen, EBE, when it started to rain and as such, he stopped to take shelter at De Kinderen, West Coast Demerara (WCD).He recalled taking a telephone call and while having a conversation, he saw a white motorcar pass by. Soon after, he noticed the car, which was heading in the direction of Vreed-en-Hoop, reversing and stop in front of the bus shed in which he was standing.McAlmont related that two men exited the car and approached him. He said that one of the men pulled out a firearm from the waist of his pants and pointed it to his head.He then demanded that he hand over the keys to the motorcycle.“The man seh ‘bai you got to give me this bike’, so I became afraid because they had the gun to my head and I give them it,” the traumatised man revealed. The men then escaped with the bike and the car sped away.That matter was also reported to the police in D Division. In that case also, no arrest was made.
– as part of New Horizons 2019 initiativeAs part of the exercises conducted by the United States Armed Forces Southern Command, New Horizons Exercise 2019, another community centre was commissioned at Blueberry Hill, Wismar, Linden, in Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice) on Thursday.The newly commissioned community centre in LindenThis was in addition to a playground at Block 22, Wismar. The exercises were marked by official opening ceremonies attended by personnel from both the local and foreign Armed Forces, officials and residents.Speaking on behalf of President David Granger, Director General of the Ministry of the Presidency, Joseph Harmon noted that the project is yet another outstanding representation of the excellent relations which exist between the United States of America and Guyana, as he pointed to the importance of community centres in bringing development to communities.“The Government of Guyana holds that relationship which has existed since August of 1966 in the highest regard. Throughout this relationship, our counties have cultivated strong, stable and sound relations. Guyana and the United States of America are bounded by geography, history and friendship that are premised on the principles of mutual respect, cooperation, respect for international laws and treaties and the maintenance of international peace and security. The United States of America continues to be one of Guyana’s most significant trade and investment partners and we truly appreciate the many programmes which have contributed to our national development and to positive social change in our society”, Harmon explained.Harmon further noted that assiduous work will ensure future activities in 2020 as he pointed out that conversations in this area are very important in bridging the gap between the length of time in which such projects are executed.“…we are also looking at some of the things that our President holds very dear to him and that is the way in which we connect our people on the coast and our people in the hinterland…with the completion of three community centres, one at Yarrowkabra, Linden-Soesdyke Highway… and two in Linden…also completing a shelter for women…the Government of Guyana is committed to building resilient communities…”, he said.Harmon also noted that community centres will contribute to the objective in providing a base in which the community can organise and educate.This, he noted, will lead to the improvement in the quality of life of residents within the communities. Additionally, he said the project will make an indelible mark on communities where the centres are located.The construction of the women’s shelter, which is located in Linden, he stated, should also be commended as he noted that it will aid in the protection, education, empowerment as well as serve a refuge for women. He noted that community centres should be used to promote development, entrepreneurship and enterprises as well as hubs for social, economic and cultural activities.The centres, Harmon said, must also be properly managed and maintained in accordance with the vision of the Green State economy. He also thanked all involved in the initiatives.Chief of Staff of the Guyana Defence Force, Brigadier Patrick West in his remarks also extended gratitude to the United States military for improved bilateral relations, positing that the New Horizons 2019 team was able to achieve more through cooperation and coordination between militaries. He said the community centre building would have a huge impact on members of the society, more so for victims of abuse and domestic violence as he also extended gratitude to the Guyana Defence Force.“Projects such as these benefit a wide cross-section of our society…many thanks to the Guyana Defence Force for its continued support and guidance…I want to say, from all perspectives, our Force will continue to benefit from shared interactions…and tangible manifestations and goodwill… I look forward to continued and deeper bilateral military relations to the benefit of both Forces and nations”, he noted.Mayor of Linden, Waneka Arindell also pointed to the importance of the projects in the community as she underscored the impacts and benefits which they bring to the lives of the people in the community.
The Central Housing and Planning Authority (CHPA) has sent out a stern warning about a fake Facebook profile under the name of President David Granger, which has been extorting monies from persons in exchange for land.According to the Authority, the sham was set up through a profile named “His Excellency President David Granger” and has been informing persons that the Ministry of the Presidency is distributing housing units to interested persons. Persons are being asked to make a down payment through the Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company’s (GTT) Mobile Money system and the money disappears, the CH&PA said on Saturday.“We are asking members of the public to be wary of scammers who may want to rob them of their hard-earned monies. The operation of a fake Facebook profile in the name of His Excellency President David Granger, informing the public that the Ministry of the Presidency is allocating 20 housing units to interested persons was brought to our attention. Interested persons are being asked to make a down payment of $350,000 through GTT’s Money Mobile System to an unknown account,” a statement said.The CH&PA has denied its involvement in any such programme under the Ministry of the Presidency or other agencies. Further, legitimate programmes do not require payments through Money Mobile transfers, but rather through the Central Housing and Planning Authority’s Brickdam office or its regional offices.Persons have been reporting these fraudulent matters and the Authority has encouraged for such to be done in any future matters. Just two months ago, First Lady Sandra Granger had cautioned about her name being used under the pretext of scholarships.Addressing the issue, the First Lady said, “All scholarships offered by the Government are offered through the Department of Public Service… If you are informed that you are to get a scholarship, check it out, call and find out…These crooks are taking advantage of the naivety and the sensitivities of the people they are approaching… It is really a scam of the worst order because people are taking advantage of other people’s vulnerabilities. These people are going from one extreme to the next to make easy money out of vulnerable people.”In April, a fraudster, Muhammad Ali, was arrested and placed before the court for impersonating the First Lady and tricking citizens into transferring money to him. The fraud managed to obtain 12 pennyweights of gold, worth $139,000 and $30,000 in GTT and Digicel phone cards, while pretending that he was in the position to grant scholarships to a young woman.