Detained Amatuk residents to return home today

The Amatuk Falls, Region 8 (Potaro-Siparuni) residents who were detained and brought to Georgetown last weekend will make their journey back home today, with assistance from the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC).

Slade Jeffrey, his wife Pamela John, Jeffrey’s father Errol Jeffrey and his wife Judy Quinn, were brought to Georgetown on Monday after being detained by officials from the Criminal Investigation Department (CID), the Guyana Defence Force (GDF), and GGMC on the Potaro River.

The four Amatuk residents brought to Georgetown for questioning in relation to mining activity around the Kaieteur National Park. From left: Judy Quinn, Errol Jeffrey, Pamela John and Slade Jeffrey.

While it appears that police had only intended to hold Slade and John, purportedly over being found in the buffer zone of the Kaieteur National Park, Errol Jeffrey and his wife Judy Quinn, were also transported to Georgetown, over alleged disorderly conduct. They were, however, not charged with the offence.

Quinn related to this newspaper that the quartet paid a visit to Freedom House yesterday, where they spoke with former Minister of Public Works Robeson Benn, who made a call to the Commissioner of the GGMC.

They were subsequently informed that the GGMC would be facilitating their travel back home to Region 8 early today.

Stabroek News reported in yesterday’s edition that the four met with law enforcement officers on Saturday, June 3, on the Potaro River. They had been told by the owner of a nearby camp that there was to be a meeting with

government officials concerning mining operations in the area.

However, upon their arrival, they were greeted by three boats full of officials from the CID, the GDF, and a GGMC employee. They related that police in Georgetown said their detention was based on information provided by the GGMC, but they could not be held as there was no evidence against them and so they were subsequently released.

After being accommodated at the Amerindian Hostel since Monday without any personal belongings or resources to travel home, they had made contact with this newspaper to request assistance.

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