80 Guyanese to be evacuated from hurricane-ravaged islands

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The Guyana government has announced that approximately 80 Guyanese will be flown home after the recent hurricanes, which ravaged the Caribbean islands of Dominica, British Virgin Islands, and Barbuda.

According to a release from the Ministry of the Presidency, Prime Minister, Moses Nagamootoo made the revelation on Thursday at the John Fernandes Limited (JFL) wharf when he, along with Minister of State, Joseph Harmon, inspected four more containers filled with $18 Million worth of relief supplies, which will be shipped to Antigua and Barbuda this weekend.

The Guyanese, who will return home will be flown to Guyana by Jags Aviation Incorporated, Roraima Airways, Fly Jamaica Airways, Air Services Limited and Hopkinson Mining Aviation.  It was noted that these companies joined the relief effort by offering this service to Government.

(From left to right) Agency Manager and Company Secretary of John Fernandes Limited (JFL) Mr. Jeremy Fernandes; Chairman of JFL, Mr. Christopher Fernandes; Minister of State, Joseph Harmon; Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo; Colonel (retd) Chabilall Ramsarup and member of the private sector Mr. Deodat Indar. (Ministry of the Presidency photo)

“All of them, who we know operate aircrafts on a commercial basis have come forward today to give assistance to make flights available to some Caribbean destinations to bring back an estimate 80 Guyanese who would like to return home, and who cannot afford to do so on their own… We are elated that we are having this type of response from the private sector and the broader Guyanese society,” the Prime Minister was quoted as saying in the release.

He added that Government will provide some aviation fuel for the flights and will work on providing identification documents for those who may have lost them during the storms. The first flight is expected to arrive in Guyana this weekend from the British Virgin Islands.

The body of Mr. Derek Ragnauth, who lost his life as a result of Hurricane Irma, will be returned to Guyana on that flight.

Meanwhile, Minister Harmon, who also echoed the sentiments of the Prime Minister, said that the Government is happy that members of the private sector and ordinary citizens have donated in cash and kind to the local relief effort.

“We have always spoken about the cooperation between the private sector and the state sector and this is a really wonderful, a powerful demonstration of us working together for the benefit of those who are in need,” Harmon was quoted as saying in the release.

Director General of the Civil Defence Commission (CDC), Colonel (ret’d) Chabilall Ramsarup said that the items, which are being sent in the shipment that was inspected amounts to in excess of 30 tonnes of food supplies, water, and medical supplies.

He said that another two containers are currently being packed at the CDC headquarters.

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