“Miners are at the mercy of gunmen” – company rep

first_img…calls for Joint Services patrolFollowing a daring attack on a mining camp belonging to Mohammed’s Enterprise, the entity is calling for Government to offer more protection for miners working on Guyana’s border.Eight foreign language speaking gunmen raided Mohamed’s Enterprise mining camp at Baboon Backdam, Cuyuni River, Region Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni), escaping with a large quantity of raw gold and other valuables, including a licensed shot gun.Speaking with this newspaper on Saturday, a representative of the company said the Police have since arrested two boat operators, who are suspected to have transported the gunmen.The representative noted that the situation in the interior has become very dangerous and is calling to Government to intervene.“We need more Joint Services patrol in the area. Guyanese miners are suffering at the hands of these bandits suspected to be Venezuelans,” the representative said.He noted that even fuel suppliers are being targeted by the gunmen.“What they do is they hide in the bushes on the river banks and when they see a boat transporting fuel, they will shoot at it. These are all foreigners doing this. We are at their mercy in the Cuyuni area.”He added that as a result of the surge in criminal activity, persons are refusing to go into the area to work.“Getting workers to work is hard now. People are afraid for their lives. The workers are scared. As such, our company is calling for protection from the Government. Guyanese miners are really suffering a lot. These gunmen are operating with high-powered weapons,” the company’s representative said.Based on reports received, the bandits were armed with high-powered weapons and were clad in dark-coloured clothing.Initial investigations revealed that about 28 workers of the mining camp were in the mining camp at between 19:00h and 23:00h on Wednesday night when the men held the camp hostage.The miners were ordered to hand over all the raw gold that was kept in the camp and other personal items, including the shot gun. After committing the robbery, the men left. No one was injured during the ordeal.In April 6, a Dominican Republic national, Pedro Pablo Rosario, a night supervisor at a mining camp, was shot and killed at about 02:00h when a group of armed and masked bandits invaded that mining camp at Black Water Backdam, Cuyuni River, Region Seven.According to information reaching <<<<>>>>, 55-year-old Rosario and four other workers were on duty while other workers were at the dredge, about 30 feet away, when the gunmen pounced on them.Rosario was reportedly relaxing in a hammock at the watch camp when one of the bandits confronted him and discharged a round that fatally struck him. The three suspects then went to the dredge area, where they held the workers at gunpoint and removed two gold mats from the sluice box before making good their escape.This newspaper had reported that the owner of the camp reportedly told investigators that a total of 100 ounces of raw gold were on the mats to settle.Although a number of persons were questioned by Police in the matter, no one has been charged.This most recent robbery comes on the heels of persons operating mining camps in the Cuyuni region complaining bitterly over security threats, particularly from members of the Venezuela-based Sindicato gang.Over the past months, President David Granger has been visiting frontline communities along the border with Venezuela, and has announced several measures to beef up security in those areas, including an increased presence of Community Policing Group members.last_img read more