Four new surveyors for Lands and Surveys Commission

The operations of the Guyana Lands and Surveys Commis-sion (GLSC) will be boosted by the addition of four new land surveyors who recently took the oath before Natural Resources and Environment Minister Robert Persaud.

The surveyors endured rigorous one-year training to emerge successful from a batch of 17 persons who took the examination from Sep-tember 10 to 13, a press report from the Government Infor-mation Agency (GINA) said.

The graduates are Stephen Liu, Winart Nelson, Sampson Perreira and Darrell Fraser. Valedictorian Liu lauded the trainers and members of the GLSC for their contributions over the past year, although he noted that success was hard won. He then encouraged the other graduates to cooperate to achieve the GLSC’s set goals.

In his address, the minister charged the graduates to adopt sound principles and to carry out their duties faithfully, in accordance with the oath taken. He also encouraged them to make a meaningful contribution to the sector as the scope for development under which the profession falls continues to expand.

Valedictorian Stephen Liu signs the Oath, before receiving his certificate from Natural Resources and Environment Minister Robert Persaud. (GINA Photo)

“Your graduation today also underlines the importance of the profession and the role you can play. Our country, given the natural wealth that we have, and the work ahead of realising our full potential, will require skills such as yours,” Persaud said.

To date, 560 surveyors have been trained by the GLSC but the unavailability of surveyors remains a major constraint within the natural resources sector. Pointing to the fact that investment is crucial, Persaud spoke of the recent collaboration between the government and the European Union (EU) for modernisation of the GLSC. The EU investment of €3M is supplemented by government’s $75M. The minister said the basic tools are  important, “but technology has advanced and we want the commission and the people as well to have access and to deliver a better service…we will continue to invest in the commission to look at ways in which staff welfare can also be improved.”

There are currently 12 surveyors at the GLSC and recognising the constraints such limitation poses, the agency will be targeting students from schools across the nation for training in this field.

GLSC Commissioner Doorga Persaud, in brief remarks, said the programme aims to provide professionals with the necessary skill to function effectively as surveyors. “Thus far, we have been able to sustain professional land surveyors in Guyana who function in both the public and private sectors…I am very pleased with the results and therefore congratulate you all on your success,” he said.

Worrying math scores
In giving an overview of the performance for 2012, Rene Duesbury, Manager of the Surveys Division and a member of the Board of Examiners, called for more focus to be put on mathematics. He said there has been a noted weakness in this subject area in the Caribbean and more needs to be done to remedy this situation.

Despite improvements this year and figures that surpass that of 2011, Duesbury said the pass rate for mathematics remains worrying. This year, passes were recorded at 70% compared with 50% last year, with passes in Mathematics, 9% in 2011 and 35% in 2012; Astronomy, 9% in 2011, and 35% in 2012; and for Surveying Theory, 65% for both years.

“As a Board, we sat and deliberated and we recognised that we have to some extent review and implement ways in which assistance can be given to candidates, so that performance in mathematics especially can improve,” he said.

Duesbury also spoke of the importance of team efforts and research when undertaking duties.

GINA noted that the job of surveyors is essential to several sectors, particularly in the light of the growing housing and construction boom, expansion of agricultural and mining lands and road networks.

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