Bulkan concedes that GWI uses Antinfek for water purification
Under pressure from the People’s Progressive Party Civic (PPP/C) in the National Assembly on this afternoon, Minister of Communities, Ronald Bulkan conceded that Antinfek; an organic chemical, is being used for the purification of water for human consumption by the Guyana Water Incorporated (GWI).
He was at the time responding to questions from PPP/C Member of Parliament, Dr. Frank Anthony.
The Minister first told the assembly that Antinfek is not being used. He said only chlorine, lime and alum are being used, however after repeated questions, Bulkan said, “some of the product that was procured was used for purification of some of the water supply lines in limited locations.”
Among questions asked by Dr. Anthony are whether the chemical was purchased, who ordered that it be used and which countries use Antinfek to purify water for human consumption. He asked a total of 12 questions and two follow-ups before he was blocked from asking anymore.
Following complaints from the Director of the Government Analyst-Food and Drug (GA-FDD), Marlan Cole that the chemical has not been tested or certified by the GA-FDD and has had negative reviews and a ban on its use in Haiti, the Guyana Water Incorporated (GWI) had also denied using the chemical.
The GWI said, “chlorine is being used as the sole disinfecting agent in all the treatment plants, while laboratory studies are being done on the use of other treatment alternatives.”
However, the company still defended the use of the chemical noting that Antinfek was tested by a number of other laboratories in countries and is being used for the disinfection of fruits and vegetables, wound dressings, eye drops, baby wipes and disinfection of pools and spas etc.