At an event held to commemorate the 33rd International AIDS Candlelight Memorial at the Catholic Life Centre, Brickdam, Georgetown on Sunday evening, Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) President Vishnu Doerga called on the Government to amend the 1997 Prevention of Discrimination Act.He urged that sexual orientation, gender identity and health status be included so that this would result in non-discrimination inGeorgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) President Vishnu Doergaemployment.Doerga told the seventh national Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) Candlelight Memorial Vigil, which was hosted by the Society Against Sexual Orientation Discrimination (SASOD), “We must seek to empower people living with HIV to stand up for their right to live a life free of stigma and discrimination. In this regard, it is important for us to ensure that our organisations are free from stigma and discrimination through workplace programmes for our staff.”He noted the value of engaging people, communities, governments, donors and the Private Sector in eliminating the scourge and supporting those living with HIV. The objective of the vigil was to bring together affected communities, policymakers, health professionals, religious leaders and members of the public to show solidarity and support for persons infected and affected by HIV, and to encourage people to continue to act together to end stigma and discrimination.It was highlighted by Doerga that to engage, educate, and embolden people living with HIV as well as marginalised populations would serve as a vital enabler towards achieving Guyana’s human rights goals, and enhanced equity for our people.The GCCI President believes that the Private Sector has the capacity to play an essential role in this and limiting the spread of HIV.“We have a responsibility to educate the current and next generation about HIV prevention, treatment and care, and how it affects our lives. Employers have a moral responsibility to ensure that employees are educated and have access to relevant information and resources,” he said.The GCCI President cited the barriers to accessing services for key populations as stigma and discrimination, noting the urgent need to end this since it affected persons living with HIV including sexual and gender minorities, sex workers and young people.Doerga indicated that the Private Sector, a key stakeholder, must take control and contribute to workplace education programmes in order to continuously address HIV in Guyana.“As the HIV response moves to long-term sustainability in Guyana, Private Sector involvement is crucial. I pledge the support of GCCI to join hands with all of you here in national efforts to bring an end to AIDS in Guyana.”
Managing Director of the Guyana Water Inc (GWI) has threatened to sue Guyana Times should the publication not retract an article published on Thursday under the caption: ‘Adamantium Holdings bids for Government contracts.’In that article, which represented the factual bid openings related to two projects;Richard Van West-Charlesnamely, the rehabilitation of two police stations, it was pointed out that Adamantium Holdings had submitted two bids.Richard Van West-Charles has since secured the services of Attorney-at-Law Satram & Satram, which on Friday dispatched an official letter to Guyana Times demanding a retraction and an apology.In the Guyana Times article, it was pointed out that the mining company Adamantium had been prominent in the news recently when it was discovered that both Adamantium and Atlantic Fuels Inc shared several close connections with Government officials.The two companies also share the same Kingston, Georgetown address, with Atlantic Fuels Inc securing an import/wholesale licence for fuel to supply, in part, the mining operations.Van West-Charles has since claimed that the statements in the article sought toThe bond Lot 16 Sublot ‘A’ Mudlot Kingston Georgetownconvey to the general public that he is corrupt and has improperly influenced Government officials and public bodies for his own benefit and gain.The article referred to does not speak to the award of any contracts, but rather highlights that the mining company did in fact submit bids for two contracts.Van West-Charles has since distanced himself from the mining company, claiming to have never been an officer or official of Adamantium Holdings, and that Atlantic Fuels Inc was in fact incorporated as a company after Adamantium.The GWI boss insists, however, that “the suggestion contained in the said article — that he is the beneficiary of corrupt transactions — was calculated to cause, and did in fact cause, him serious reputational injury; and imputed that he is corrupt, dishonest, unethical and engages in criminal conduct.According to Van West-Charles lawyers, the publication is a part of a pattern of persistent attacks on his character, “all calculated to ruin his reputation (and) humiliate and expose him to contempt, hatred and ridicule by members of society in general.”The GWI boss believes this position entitles him to aggravated or other damages, and has since called for Guyana Times to desist from publishing similar statements.Guyana Times reiterates that the article was in fact captioned ‘Adamantium Holdings bids for Government contracts’, and focused on the bids submitted.According to the substantive contents of the article, bids were opened on Tuesday at the National Procurement and Tender Administration Board (NPTAB), housed at the Finance Ministry.Among the contracts advertised that attracted significant attention was the rehabilitation of the Alberttown Police Station, estimated to cost some $20.9 million.Adamantium, with a bid of $20.5 million, is among the bidders for that project; while the lowest bidder came in at $17 million.Adamantium Holdings was also among the featured bidders for the rehabilitation of the Sparendaam Police Station, estimated to cost some $14.9 million.The lowest bidder came in at $11.8 million, with Adamantium Holdings Inc coming in at $15 million.The company has, since 2015, become a regular feature across a number of industries outside of mining.Other bids opened at the NPTAB on Tuesday related to rehabilitation of the Mahaicony Police Station.Back in September 2015, the company had set its sights on rehabilitation/repairs of roads from the Brian Sucre Junction to Mahdia, Region Eight (Potaro-Siparuni).The company had submitted a $40 million bid at the time.Adamantium Holdings, in conjunction with Atlantic Fuels Inc, is also premier supplier of fuel for interior mining operations.The companies were granted fuel licences by the Guyana Energy Agency (GEA) under questionable circumstances when it was discovered that the company did not meet the minimum requirements under the laws.
A 30-year-old East Bank Demerara (EBD) resident has been hospitalised in critical condition after he was shot by armed bandits just after midnight on Tuesday.The injured man has been identified as Ishwar Ramanah, called “Jack”, a machine operator from Macaw Drive, Kaneville, EBD. The incident occurred at 00:10h at the victim’s home.According to reports, Ramanah was attacked by two armed men, who relieved him of a gold chain valued $40,000. However, the bandits shot the man once in the abdomen before making good their escape.The injured man was taken to seek medical attention at a medical facility and has undergone surgery.The Police have since recovered a spent shell of a small calibre weapon at the scene. No arrests have been made. Investigations are continuing.
Do you remember this man? Bobby Jack Fowler may be linked to seven other Highway of Tears cases.By Jorge BarreraAPTN National NewsThe RCMP said Tuesday investigators had linked at least three “Highway of Tears” murders to a U.S. serial killer who died from lung cancer in 2006 while serving time in an Oregon prison.Investigators with the RCMP’s Project E-PANA, the British Columbia-based task force probing Highway of Tears cold cases, said Bobby Jack Fowler murdered a 16 year-old girl and was strongly suspected of killing two 19 year-olds in the province during the 1970s.The investigators said they suspected Fowler could also be linked to seven other case involving murders and disappearances of women from Highways 97, 16 and 5, in the B.C. interior between Prince George and Prince Rupert.The Highway of Tears investigation is focusing on a total of 18 cases ranging from 1969 to 2006 which are all linked by their close proximity to the three highways. The cases involve 13 murders and five missing women investigations. The majority of the cases involve First Nations women.The RCMP said a second serial killer may also be responsible for some of the murders. Investigators have identified three suspects in connection with three murders. In at least two of the cases the RCMP believes the linked suspects killed only once.It took a world first in police investigations for the RCMP to link Fowler with the 1974 murder of Colleen MacMillen, a 16 year-old from Lac La Hache, B.C.MacMillen was last seen hitchhiking on Hwy 97 on Aug. 9, 1974. She was later found murdered off a logging road about 46 kilometres south from her last known location.Earlier this year, as a result of new DNA identification technology, the RCMP submitted the DNA of an unknown male that had been isolated in MacMillen’s case to Interpol’s foreign DNA database. On May 3, Oregon State Police made a match, the oldest DNA match in history.The RCMP also believes that Fowler is linked to the 1973 murder of Gale West, 19, and the killing of Pamela Darlington, 19, that same year. He was known to travel Hwy 16.“These are just two of the cases we are looking for connections to, but we are fully open to the possibility that Fowler committed other violent offences against women that may or may not have been reported to police,” said Ins. Gary Shinkaruk, officer in charge of the B.C. RCMP Major Crime, Special Projects Unit.The RCMP, however, would not reveal how Fowler killed his victims.Fowler died at age 66 in prison while serving time for the 1995 kidnapping and attempted rape of a woman who fled from his grasp by jumping out a second floor window at the Tides Inn Motel in Newport, Oregon, naked, with a rope tied to her ankle.Oregon authorities have linked Fowler to at least four unsolved murders of teen girls.A drifter, who did odd jobs, drove old cars into the ground and moved between U.S. states and across the international border, Fowler had an extensive, violent criminal history in the U.S. but left barely a trace during his time in Canada.Shinkaruk said the U.S.-born Fowler had criminal convictions spanning several states that included attempted murder, assault with a dangerous weapon, sexual assault, arson, kidnapping and attempted sexual assault.Fowler had a deceptively charming and disarming personality which could darken on a moment’s notice and would then become extremely aggressive and violent with often deadly aims. He often acted under the twisted belief that women who hitchhiked, went to taverns or bars desired to be violently sexually assaulted.“A number of living victims that provided information to us…that is disturbing and graphic in nature,” said Shinkaruk. “Some living individuals stated that his intention was to actually kill them.”The RCMP teamed up with the F.B.I., 31 law enforcement agencies and 11 state correctional departments, in the investigation into Fowler that led all the way to Texas where he once killed a man in 1970 but escaped conviction on the death.The RCMP interviewed Fowler’s family in the U.S., who suspected him of murdering one of their own, associates and cell mates in hopes of uncovering bits of information that would shed light on the killer’s time in Canada.RCMP investigators managed to create a timeline for Fowler’s movement spanning the last 40 years, but still faced extensive gaps from his time in B.C..“Our challenge had been determining with certainty Fowler’s history here in British Columbia,” said Shinkaruk.Despite his vicious criminal history in the U.S., there is no trace of Fowler in Canadian police databases. Investigators uncovered that he worked for Prince George roofing company, Happy’s Roofing, in 1974. The company’s records now no longer exist.Shinkaruk said the RCMP was releasing photos of Fowler and a video in hopes of stirring the memories of residents in the area.“We believe there are people out there who employed Fowler, worked with him, socialized with him or even waited on him while he was in British Columbia,” he said. “We are asking you to think back to the 70s, 80s and 90s, and your own memories of that time period, then have a look at his photos and please call us with any information you have about him.”Shawn MacMillan, Colleen MacMillan’s brother, said news that the RCMP finally found his sister’s killer was bitter-sweet at best.The RCMP is also exploring whether Fowler travelled in the neighbouring province of Alberta or up in the Yukon or Northwest Territories.“It has been a long wait for answers and though as a somewhat unsatisfactory result because this individual won’t stand trial for what he did, we are comforted by the fact that he was in prison when he died and he can’t hurt anyone else,” said Shawn MacMillan. “Colleen was a lovely, sweet 16 year-old kid and there are no words to express how terribly she was robbed.”[email protected]