Ramjattan tells Police to ‘take away’ equipment of bars, others causing noise nuisance

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The Minister of Public Security, Khemraj Ramjattan, is urging the Police to take tough action against bars and others responsible for noise nuisances.

“We want to take the profit out of this illegal activity and that means, that we must start, after going through the procedures, ensuring that we can revoke some of the licenses of these bars that play loud music or the (carts) selling their video and their tape recordings…making noise, or the cars of people,” Ramjattan told officers at a Noise Nuisance training programme Thursday.

“…taking away their equipment!”

“This thing is becoming a little bit more annoying,” the Minister declared.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has raised concerns about the number of businesses, especially bars, that contribute to varying levels of noise nuisance.

Several complaints have been levelled against a popular bar at Station Street, Kitty which has had several complaints levelled against it for noise nuisance.

However, Ramjattan admitted that delinquent businesses breach the laws using “what you call connections to certain big players.”

He was at the time alluding to a popular bar on Main Street, Georgetown, noting that he received multiple complaints of noise nuisance.

Police Officers and Officials from the EPA at Thursday’s training

In his address at the session held at the Police Officers Training Centre, Camp Road, the Minister urged the 50 police officers to move beyond prosecuting the culprits.

He said that the law provides for sound proof indoor bars.

“Guyanese have this culture of wanting to defy everything standing in their way.”

He believes that by becoming more familiar with the laws, the police officers will be better able to enforce them.

The EPA is responsible for determining the level of noise that is permitted for entertainment and other purposes.

However, permission for special events is approved by the Police force. The Minister said, “they could revoke those licenses because they making a lot of noise and some places get fish fry and bar-b-que on such regular basis.”

Aminah McPherson-Damon, Executive Director (ag) of the EPA, told police officers and others that the Body spearheaded outreaches to Station Street, Kitty, Georgetown and the Soesdyke junction.

In mining areas, licenses are granted to shops by the Ministry of Natural Resources, the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA) grants permission for the erection of bars and businesses in communities and the M&CC does same in Georgetown.

Senior Superintendent of the Guyana Police Force, Errol Watts reported that there were a total of 417 reports of noise nuisance at the end of 2017 and over 300 so far for this year.

While in most of those cases, charges were laid against the perpetrators, he said the challenge faced by the Police force is the sloth of prosecution.

However, he encouraged victims to bear with the Force and not become frustrated.

Also included in the one-day training is a practical session which allows officers to determine when loud noises are breaching the Environment Act from simply hearing the sound in the community.

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