first_img…several recommendations not acted uponGovernment is denying that monies spent on the Lindo Creek Commission of Inquiry were a waste of time; even as certain recommendations including those of a financial nature have not been acted upon.Minister of State Joseph HarmonThis acknowledgement was made by Minister of State Joseph Harmon, during a post-Cabinet press conference. According to Harmon, only some of the recommendations that had to do with restructuring the joint services have been implemented.Harmon explained that changes have been made to ensure that more control is kept over the joint services. But there was no word on when compensation for the families of the eight victims, a major recommendation arising out of the CoI, would be paid.“The Commission of Inquiry made several recommendations. Some of those recommendations are administrative in nature. And they have been acted upon at the level of the Guyana Police Force and Guyana Defence Force. Some of them have pecuniary implications and those matters are still to be acted upon.”“But I can say to you when Commissions of Inquiries sit, they make a huge amount of recommendations. For example, the Guyana Public Service Commission of Inquiry made 87 recommendations. And so you have to look at every one of these recommendations and see which ones can be implemented now and which ones can be implemented in the medium and long term.”While Harmon acknowledged the cost of the CoI as exceeding $100 million, he insisted that the money was not wasted as lives were lost and closure was needed.“I don’t consider the expense that we spent on that Commission as a waste. It’s a lot of money indeed. But the value of the lives of every Guyanese, we cannot put a price tag on it. Several Guyanese lives were lost,” Harmon said.Sometime between June 12, 2008, and June 24, 2008, miners Cecil Arokium, Dax Arokium, Compton Speirs, Horace Drakes, Clifton Wong, Lancelot Lee, Bonny Harry and Nigel Torres were shot and killed and their bodies burnt at the Upper Berbice River mining camp, which was being operated by Leonard Arokium.The Lindo Creek CoI was the first of what the coalition Government has said would be a series of inquiries into killings which occurred during a crime wave that began in 2002.The CoI was established to inquire into the circumstances surrounding the killings of the eight miners and to report its findings as well as recommendations to President David Granger. The CoI was completed and handed over since August of last year.Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo has been critical of the CoI, noting previously that the conduct of the Lindo Creek Commission of Inquiry (CoI) is reminiscent of a Commission hell-bent on achieving a particular outcome – one which points the finger to the armed forces.In particular, Jagdeo had expressed concern over what he said was the slant the CoI was taking and had pointed to the manner in which witnesses were being cross-examined, as though the testimony must fit a particular narrative.last_img

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