The West Indies’ second- highest Test-scoring batsman, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, has expressed delight at being formally recognised by the Jamaica Cricket Association JCA, for his contribution to West Indies cricket. The recognition, which came via a commemorative plaque, as well as tributes from officials of the JCA, was made on Monday following the conclusion of the WICB regional four-day tournament contest between Jamaica Scorpions and Guyana Jaguars at Sabina Park. The plaque, which had an image of Chanderpaul enshrined on it, as well as a citation, was presented by JCA president Wilford ‘Billy” Heaven in the presence of the players and officials of both teams. JCA Chief Executive Officer, Courtney Francis, read the citation. ”I am very, very happy about it and very thankful that the JCA has seen it fit to recognise me,” said Chanderpaul, who is second on the list of West Indies leading run-getters behind Brian Lara. ”It really feels special when it is at the back end of your career that people recognise you for the work that you have done, having played cricket in the Caribbean for over 20 years,” he declared. Chanderpaul, 42, who recently negotiated a Kolpak deal to play county cricket in England, played 164 matches for the West Indies, an outstanding average of 51.37, while scoring 11,867 runs. Lara scored 11,953 runs from 131 matches at an average of 52.88. Heaven, who said his association could not have allowed an outstanding player like Chanderpaul, who is likely to have played his final match at Sabina Park to go unrecognised, described the Guyanese as an icon. “Chanderpaul has had a fulfilling and illustrious career, not only for the West Indies, but also for Guyana and the several clubs and counties that he would have played for throughout his career,” stated Heaven. He brought to the game not only his cricketing skill and prowess, but a high level of dedication, commitment and resilience, and throughout has played with such levels of maturity and professionalism. ”These are attributes of a high order, admirable, and what all of our current young cricketers, and others, should look to aspire to.” Thankful
A majority of the 68 cases of human trafficking recorded by the Guyana Police Force from January to May of 2018 were Latin American nationals, with Venezuelans heading the list.Acting Coordinator of the Ministerial Task Force on TIP Oliver Profitt pose with participents at the training exercise on TuesdayThis revelation was made by acting Coordinator of the Ministerial Task Force on Trafficking In Persons (TIP), Oliver Profitt on Tuesday, who explained that the alleged victims are mostly adults.Profitt, who spoke to media operatives on the sidelines of a training exercise for officers of the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC), said this issue is being closely monitored.“Most of our foreign alleged victims are from Latin American countries. The Dominican Republic was showing up a lot before, Brazil was showing up too. But now we are seeing more Venezuelans.”In the US (United States) State Department Trafficking in Persons 2017 Report, it said Guyana is a source and destination country for men, women, and children subjected to sex trafficking and forced labour in mining, agriculture, forestry, domestic service and shops.The report stated that for the past five years, women and children from Guyana, Brazil, The Dominican Republic, Suriname, and Venezuela have been subjected to sex trafficking in mining communities in the interior and urban areas.Profitt made reference to a raid which was conducted by the Police Force earlier this year, where 41 alleged victims were rescued; 35 of which were found to be Venezuelans.According to Profitt, Guyana has recorded 68 cases of alleged TIP already for 2018. Police statistics also recorded 41 alleged TIP cases in 2014, 51 in 2015, 98 in 2016 and 50 in 2017.Meanwhile, although there has been some level of success in tackling this issue and Guyana recently moving to a Tier 1 country, the TIP coordinator explained that there are still some challenges.According to Profitt, one of the major challenges is being able to secure successful prosecutions, mainly due to the fact that most times the alleged victims are deported.He said, “Let’s say for example we have an alleged victim from overseas, the time it takes to investigate and prosecute, sometimes mostly adults, and wouldn’t be interested in sticking around or staying through the entire process. And what you find in Guyana and almost all other nations, a victim’s testimony is paramount to achieving a successful prosecution.”In most cases, the victims would have families back at home and would need their support in order to stay through the process. If they don’t have the support, then it is more than likely that they often times return to their home country and the cases are left unsolved.But the acting TIP coordinator said the Ministerial Task Force is looking to increase prosecution rates through training, information sharing with other countries and alternatives to obtaining testimonies.“What is positive is that even if alleged victim returns home, there is a provision for the use of Skype; of video testimony from their home territory. So we’re trying to tap into these options to make ourselves a bit more successful in the future…,” Profitt explained.As such, a proposal has been drafted which looks at various options of improving the current process. The Task Force also plans to work more closely with other countries to collaborate on these issues.The Social Protection Ministry has been the lead agency responsible for tackling trafficking and overseeing the work of the Anti-Trafficking Unit (ATU).The US had recommended Guyana provide additional protection for victims, to enable them to testify against traffickers in a way that minimises re-traumatisation; record the number of cases reported to the trafficking hotline to promote a rapid investigative and victim assistance response; and provide training for diplomatic personnel on human trafficking.Recommendations were also made to have funding of specialised victim services; vigorously investigate and prosecute sex and labour trafficking cases; train law enforcement, judicial officials and frontline responders – especially those working outside the capital – on victim identification and referral procedures and finalise the written identification procedures to better guide law enforcement officials.In 2016, the Government reported 19 trafficking investigations, 19 prosecutions, and two convictions; compared to 15 trafficking investigations, seven prosecutions, and one conviction in 2015; and seven investigations, four prosecutions, and one conviction in 2014.