Illegal excavation taking place in Region 10
Natural Resources Minister Raphael Trotman has given the assurance that the subject Ministry will look into issues of illegal mining, including allegations of unauthorised extraction of sand, loam, and stone from areas in Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice).Natural Resources Minister Raphael TrotmanOver the years, there have been numerous complaints from residents and officials in the Region against companies and individuals participating in the illegal act. The Moblissa area has been one of concern for years, though it falls under the jurisdiction of Region Four (Demerara-Mahaica), it is managed by the Region 10 administration. Only recently, officials, including Regional Chairman Renis Morian and Minister within the Natural Resources Ministry, Simona Broomes, were summoned to the area over complaints. Linden has also been subjected to similar complaints over the years, particularly at Amelia’s Ward, Mackenzie where several illegal sand pits reportedly exist.The Natural Resources Minister also noted that there has been decades of disarray in the Region which the Ministry would be looking into. He said while he did not expect the issues to be solved overnight, they were of great concern, as he pointed out that the Natural Resources Ministry has a responsibility to look into these issues.Addressing the sand pit issue specifically, Trotman warned that if sand was being removed, then this should be done in a lawful manner, that is from an authorised sand pit.“I think we have, over the years, neglected the supervision of sand, loam, stone and so it is something we’re going to pay keen attention to. I’ve asked Minister Broomes to oversee that…So, we are going to be working with the Region and if needs be, the municipality as well to ensure there’s order brought,” the Minister explained.He added that he wanted to hear more from the Region as it related to concerns and would like to work more with the people to enhance their livelihood. In this regard, he said he wished to work closely with the relevant parties in developing the Centennial Park at Linden.2 companies apply to conduct mining in LindenThe Minister added that two companies have so far expressed interest and have made applications to conduct mining in Linden, Region 10. He said while no formal work has commenced, there would be much benefit for the Region. “They haven’t started formal work, but I believe some proprietary works are going to start. So, there’s much happening and much benefits are going to come to the Region as well,” Trotman said.