Guyana to send 350 tons of relief items to St Vincent in first shipment
Outlining that Guyana’s support to St Vincent and the Grenadines will be continuous in the coming weeks as the Caribbean island begins its recovery from the ravages of last week’s volcano eruption, President Irfaan Ali has said that Guyana intends to ship 350 tons of relief items for the people there.
“The support will be continuous and not one-off,” he said. Dr. Ali said he spent the last two days working along with the Prime Minister, the local private sector, the Civil Defence Commission and other government agencies to organise the relief that will sail from Guyana Monday night.
He said although there is goodwill and Guyana intends to send more, the country is limited in this first instance because it is simply what the ship can take at this time.
Among the items being sent are dry goods like rice, sugar and beans and cleaning materials, personal protective gears. A second shipment with water tanks and water is expected in the coming days.
The President said these items were compiled in keeping with a list submitted by the authorities in St Vincent and it will also go towards supporting the several thousands of Guyanese living there.
Three days after La Soufrière volcano began to erupt north on the island, it remains under a shower of ash and subject to severe water shortage.
Dr. Ali said Guyana was also facing some difficulty in terms of the logistics with getting the items to St Vincent even as he pledged further support against the long term effects of the volcano eruption.
The President added that Vice President, Dr Bharrat Jagdeo, has been in contact with the Honorary Consul in relation to Guyanese on the islands and has been assured that they are all safe.
With more than 4000 Guyanese living in St Vincent, Dr. Ali said Guyana has received no request for evacuations.
Along with the emergency response, the Head of State pointed out that the army is on standby in case they are needed on the ground in the aftermath of the eruption.
Several thousands of persons have been ordered evacuated from the communities close to the volcano (red zones) with some refusing to leave and insisting they will wait it out.