KINGSTON - A team of Officers from the Maritime Administration Department (MARAD), and Regional Chairman, Region 5, Mr. Bindrabhan Bisnauth, visited the Mahaicony Creek area on Wednesday June 18, 2014.
They were there to sensitize boat operators on the importance of having their vessels inspected and certified, and for the operators themselves to be examined and certified.
This visit was initiated by the Honourable Robeson Benn, Minister of Public Work after he would have received reports about allegedly poor condition of boats and also poor operational practices in the area. The people in riparian communities such as the Mahaicony Creek depend upon marine transportation. However, most of the boats operators are unlicensed.
Meanwhile as part of the effort of promoting safety on our waterways, a total of seventy-four (74) children life jackets were distributed to schools in the Mahaicony Creek area. They are Gordon Table Nursery and Primary School, Karamat Primary School and Moora Point Nursery School.
At the Gordon Table Nursery and Primary School, Teacher, Ms. Laurain McLennon expressed her gratitude to MARAD for the donation of twenty-five (25) children life jackets and assured the team that she would ensure the children of her school wear their jackets whenever travelling on a boat.
Head-teacher of the Karamat Primary School, Mr. Lalto Paul was very grateful for the thirty-three (33) life jackets for the children in light of concerns he expressed about unsafe practices by boat operators in the area. He also spoke about the timeliness of the donation and thanked the Department for the initiative.
Similar sentiments were also expressed by the Head-teacher of the Moora Point Nursery School, Ms Bindoo Inshan as she received sixteen (16) children life jackets for the students of her school.
The Regional Chairman in brief remarks to the boat operators, encouraged them to equip their boats with lifejackets, and then to ensure that their passengers wear them at all times while traversing the waterways. He repeated one of MARAD’s themes that “lifejackets saves lives”. Then in closing, he thanked the team from MARAD for the donation of the children life jackets.
The Maritime Administration Department will continue its safety campaign to other Regions of Guyana in keeping with its mandate of promoting maritime safety in Guyana.
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