The United States on Monday committed additional financial resources to Guyana, which it hopes will be significant in supporting the new government’s law enforcement reform efforts.
A letter of amendment was signed on Monday between Guyana’s Foreign Minister Carl Greenidge and Chargé d’ Affaires of the U.S Embassy in Georgetown, Bryan Hunt. It allows for the additional grant of US$50,000 under the existing Caribbean Basin Security Initiative (CBSI).
The US$50,000 is intended to fund three projects which will collectively boost Guyana’s narcotics control efforts and local law enforcement capacity. It will also assist in increasing interdictions, seizures and eradication operations.
Guyana and the US first signed the letter of agreement on narcotics control and law enforcement in 2011. To date, three letters of amendments were signed which bring the total funds under this initiative to US$900,000.
Hunt acknowledged that the new APNU+AFC administration led by President Granger has been clear on its political commitment to taking the steps necessary to ensure that Guyana’s law enforcement agency are able to prevent the country from being used as a safe haven by international criminal elements.
He explained that it was for this reason that the US government has decided to invest further in the collaborative law enforcement partnership.
The new amendment, Hunt says, will play a critical role in training and equipping local law enforcement agencies to combat narcotics trafficking and strengthen police capabilities.
The US has committed to working with Guyana to strengthen its border control security systems, anti – corruption measures, drug demand reduction, prison reform and associated training.
Meanwhile, Greenidge expressed gratitude on behalf of the Guyana government for the assistance by the US government which he explained will also result in the strengthening of the judicial sector ability to address narcotics trafficking and transnational crime.
He said it is the government’s hope that in the long-term the project will help to improve the quality and integrity of law enforcement officers.
“I’d like to indicate our appreciation to the U.S for their continued support and emphasize the fact that this project is geared towards funding our efforts in strengthening the public security sector, a very very important dimension of our policies today,” he added.
Through the CBSI, Guyana has partnered with the United States and other nations of the Caribbean to combat the drug trade and transnational crime that threatens regional security. (Kurt Campbell)