300kg of illegal pesticides seized; smuggling ring thwarted
The Pesticides and Toxic Chemicals Control Board (PTCCB) has seized approximately 300 kilograms of illegal or unregistered pesticides and thwarted a major smuggling operation at Crabwood Creek, Berbice.
In a statement on Monday, the PTCCB said Inspection and Enforcement Officers of the Control Board in collaboration with the Guyana Police Force on Sunday night found the items at the home of Mr. Veerasammy Armogan of Crabwood Creek Backlands, Grant 1779 Corentyne, Berbice.
According to officials from PTCCB, the products are regarded as “highly hazardous pesticides and pose significant risks to human health, agricultural production, economic trade and the environment.”
The regulating body has commenced legal proceedings against Mr. Armogan for the possession of illegal/unregistered pesticides with intent to distribute, sell or use.
“The PTCCB is also currently investigating further intelligence gathered to curb the illegal trade of counterfeit pesticides into Guyana,” the statement from the Board noted.
Registrar of the PTCCB, Trecia Garnath, according to the statement, said that the Board strongly condemns acts of this nature given the major health and environmental impacts these chemicals pose.
“The global trade in counterfeit and illegal pesticides is growing. With increasing quantities of fake and illegal pesticides being produced, marketed and sold by organized criminal groups around the world, there are greater risks to the safety of handlers, farmers, consumers and the environment,” Garnath was quoted saying.
Counterfeit and illegal products are neither tested nor evaluated and are not subjected to the legislative regulatory process for pesticides.
“These products often contain chemicals which are either banned or restricted due to the risk they pose to human health and/or the environment,” the PTCCB said.
In an effort to ensure sound chemicals management in Guyana, the PTCCB’s mandate is to eliminate the importation, sale and use of illegal pesticides while reducing the availability of these unwanted products.