Gov’t releases Haitians detained for weeks ahead of Court ruling

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Hours after the Attorney General Chambers disseminated three affidavits in support of the State’s defense that some 26 Haitians, who were detained pending deportation, were treated justly, the government has released those Haitians.

This comes almost a week after Chief Justice (ag), Roxane George granted a conservatory order halting the deportation of the 26 Haitians, who remained in custody at a government facility at Onverwagt, West Coast Berbice (WCB) up until Wednesday.

The ten men, nine women and seven children, who were weeks ago intercepted by police at a city hotel and in a mini-bus on the Linden – Mabura Road, were reportedly rounded up on Wednesday afternoon and brought to the city and dropped off at the city hotel.

The hotel owner said that he was making preparations to accommodate them but only 14 of the persons were initially at his hotel.

He told reporters at the scene that he received no correspondence from Guyanese authorities that the Haitians were being released and returned to his South Road, Georgetown hotel.

The Haitians themselves could be heard complaining that the manner in which they were treated was humiliating.

Haitians nationals standing outside South Road, Georgetown hotel.

On December 1, Principal Magistrate, Sherdel-Isaacs-Marcus, at the Georgetown Magistrates’ Court, issued an order for the nationals to be taken to the nearest port of exit on the grounds that the violated Guyana’s immigration laws.

In the affidavits released by the Attorney General Chamber on Wednesday night, the State, through sworn statements by three police detectives, maintained that the Haitian nationals lied to immigration officers about where they would be staying while in the country when they arrived in Guyana on November 7.

This, the State insisted, is a violation of the immigration laws.

The Chief Justice suspended the deportation until the High Court decides on the constitutionality of their detention and planned removal from Guyana.

The case comes up again on December 18, 2020, at 13:30h.

In the sworn affidavits released by the AG chambers, Police Sergeant, Nankumar Dalloo claimed that he has personal knowledge of the fact that over the past few years, hundreds of Haitians have entered Guyana legally and a very small number have left, at least, legally.
He said these include large numbers of women and children.

The Guyana Police Force is reported to have received reliable intelligence that a large number of these persons have left Guyana illegally for Brazil and Suriname.

Meanwhile, Mark Dover, the Administrator at the Hugo Chavez Centre for Rehabilitation and Reintegration has testified that the detained Haitians were treated fairly while at the centre.

Additionally, Detective Assistant Superintendent of Police, Mitchell Caesar has supported the State’s defense and testified that there was inconsistency in the information provided by the guardian of one of the children detained.

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