With the Canawaima ferry out of operation and bringing a halt to the ferry service between Guyana and Suriname, the Guyana Government is contemplating whether Guyana should put one of its own ferries to traverse the crossing.
The Canawaima is operated by both Governments on a six-month rotation basis, but the ferry’s engine has been giving troubles for a while and a decision was made recently to put it out of operation for the problem to be investigated and possibly rectified.
That decision has left a void in the crossing, which sees more than 70,000 people utilizing the service annually.
Today, Director General at the Ministry of the Presidency, Joe Harmon, said the Public Infrastructure Minister is examining the possibility Guyana moving one of its ferries to the location.
“We have completed what we need to do in so far as our obligations and so it is now really a matter of getting the two sides together to recognise that this is a service that the people are depending on and if it becomes necessary, I believe our Minister of Public Infrastructure has already started to contemplate whether we will have to put a vessel there ourselves”, Harmon said.
This weekend, the MB Sandaka, will ply the route to assist stranded passengers. But when the Sandaka wraps up its operations this weekend, travelers will be forced to use the backtrack crossing between the two countries, which remain unregularised. Mr. Harmon said that is not something that the Government would encourage.
Mr. Harmon said both the Governments of Guyana and Suriname have had previous discussions on the ferry situation, noting that it came up for discussion during a meeting between President Granger and his Surinamese counterpart.