Desperate for help, more Venezuelan migrants seek refuge in Region Two
Over 100 migrants suspected to have travelled from Cariaco in Venezuela arrived in Guyana on Friday last.
The migrants with young babies turned up in Kabakaburi, an Amerindian village in the Upper Pomeroon River, Region Two. They were in desperate need of food, clothing and medical care, the Village’s Toshao, Monty Simon told the News Room on Wednesday.
Simon explained that a few migrants arrived in the village in November last year but last week, a group of 25 arrived and were followed by dozens more.
The migrants, said to be from the Warrau tribe, reportedly paddled their way to the village and have since been relocated to a migrant camp in Region One by members of the joint services. Immigration officers, the Coast Guard and police all responded to the situation.
“They were desperate, they came seeking a better life for their babies and families because I don’t think they would sacrifice eight days or nine days on the water top, coming from wherever,” Simon explained.
Not long after their arrival, the authorities in the region dispatched a medical team and also provided shelter and food hampers.
“The first thing we wanted to know is if they come in with any sickness, so quickly we dispatched our health team to ensure that no sickness they bringing into our area,” Regional Chairman Vilma De Silva told the News Room.
Meanwhile, Simon debunked claims in the media that the migrants were destroying their farmlands.
The United Nations (UN) Refugee Agency Representative for Guyana, Philippa Candler revealed in November that about 24,500 Venezuelans have migrated to Guyana. The international body had expressed concerns about the condition of the Warrau indigenous migrants.
According to assessments conducted in October and November in 2021, the Warrau migrants, in particular, have mounting needs and this has been worsened by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Additionally, in November last year about 20 Venezuelan Warrau children were found sick and malnourished at Anabisi in the North West District; immediate medical care was provided following the government’s intervention.