Inquiry into death of BOSAI employee to commence on Monday

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A ten-member team has been appointed to conduct a formal investigation into the death of Neptrid Hercules, the BOSAI employee who died after the plot of land he was working on caved in and swallowed him and a bulldozer on March 11.

Minister of Labour Joseph Hamilton appointed the team on Monday.

The probe will be chaired by veteran engineer Charles Ceres. Other members of the team include Emilia Maslen, Victor Fernandes from the National Advisory Council on Occupational Safety and Health (NACOSH), and Jimmy Reece, Michael A Howard and Krishna Ramdas from the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC).

It will also see the participation of Neza King and Darwin Bourne from the Occupational Safety and Health Department of the Ministry of Labour and Colis Primo from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

Legal guidance and representation will be provided by attorney Alyea Williams, the legal officer attached to the Ministry.

The investigation will last six weeks.

In a press release issued on Monday, the Ministry of Labour said Minister Hamilton met with the team and briefed them on the Terms of Reference as well as the Ministry’s expectation of the investigation.

“This action is in keeping with Section 72 (1) of the Occupational Safety and Health Act, Chapter 99:06 Laws of Guyana,” the statement said.

“The Act gives the Minister the power to direct formal investigation into any accident arising out of and in the course of employment of any worker where he considers it expedient to so do. The persons appointed are referred to as “the court” and “shall hold the investigation in open court in such a manner and under such conditions as the court may think most effectual for ascertaining the causes and circumstances of the accident”, it explained.

The main purpose of the investigation is to determine the cause (s) of the accident and make recommendations for the prevention of accidents generally and more in particular the recurrence of similar accidents, the ministry said.

“The Minister is deeply concerned about this matter. He holds the view that this accident should never have happened and he owes it to the family, co-workers and the community to ensure that that there are no recurrences. Hence the appointment of this formal investigation to provide answers to the numerous questions that abound and recommendations for implementation,” the statement noted.

Fifty-nine-year-old Hercules, a resident of Wismar, Linden went missing in the wee hours of Saturday, March 11 after a plot of land he was working on swallowed him and the bulldozer he was operating.

Days after, the man’s decomposed body was found at the company’s Montgomery Mines in Linden, Region 10 following a massive search and rescue operation. Rescuers pulled his body from inside the bulldozer.

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