Family suspects foul play in reported Makari River drowning

Relatives of Jeffroy Girwar, one of the two men who drowned on Thursday last in the Makari River, in Region Seven, are calling for a thorough investigation of his death, which they believe is the result of foul play.

Girwar, 26, of 111 Miles, Mahdia, Region Eight (Potaro-Siparuni) and another man, identified only as ‘Fineman,’ are reported to have drowned after a boat they were travelling in across the river sank on Thursday night.

Guyana Police Force spokesman Jairam Ramlakhan, in a statement to the press, yesterday noted that a post-mortem examination performed by government pathologist Dr. Nehaul Singh gave Girwar’s cause of death as drowning and trauma to the head. Ramlakhan also said that the suspected relatives of “Fineman” were travelling to Georgetown to positively identify the body before an autopsy is done.

Stabroek News had reported that Girwar and ‘Fineman’ were hired to assist Suban Hussain, 37, a miner of Byderabo, Bartica, to move his dredge from the backdam. Hussain made the report to police after he was informed of the tragedy by his General Manager.

The two men left the site at Makari, Hussain reported to the police on Friday. The two men met three others and boarded a small boat.

Girwar’s brother, John Vanlonge, yesterday said that there are a number of unanswered questions about his death and he called on the police to investigate the matter fully.

He stated that his brother’s boss, Hussain, has given different accounts of what occurred to his family.

“One time he is saying that my brother and his friend [‘Fineman’] stole the boat and then another thing we hearing is that he told my brother he can use the boat anytime. We just don’t know what went wrong and we need answers,” he said.

According to Vanlonge, at the time of the mishap, his brother was the captain of the boat.

“We heard the boat sank and they drowned… we don’t know what happen and we find it strange that my brother, who is a perfect swimmer, drowned like that,” Vanlonge said, while calling on the police to question the three survivors as he believed they can provided vital information on the death of his brother.

However, acting Commander of ‘F’ Division Kevin Adonis yesterday told Stabroek News that the police are treating the “incident as a drowning. We do not have the evidence to show otherwise.”

Adonis stated that after the bodies were spotted on Sunday, the rescue team tied them to trees on the bank of the river in a bid to prevent them from floating away.

He explained that the area where the boat sank is filled with rocks and the water is always flowing “so to prevent the bodies from drifting away they were tied to the trees.”

Adonis said the bodies were found at around noon on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Vanlonge explained that he had not seen his brother in four years as he was always working in the interior.

He also said Hussain indicated that he would not be able to provide much assistance since he had to pay to have the bodies recovered from the river and transported to the city.

Girwar is to be laid to rest today, according to his relatives.

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