By Jomo Paul
[www.inewsguyana.com] – Vice President and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Carl Greenidge has confirmed that the APNU+AFC administration is yet to decide on a replacement for Guyana’s Ambassador to Venezuela.
Guyana’s Geoffrey Da Silva is expected to return home sometime this week having served as Ambassador since December 2010. Da Silva is a former Chief Executive Officer of Go-Invest and also served as Minister of Trade, Tourism and Industry under the former People’s Progressive Party/Civic administration.
When questioned on Tuesday about a possible replacement, Greenidge would only say that “at some point he will be replaced.”
Further probed about whether the replacement would come from the local corps, the Vice President responded “we haven’t finished the exercise yet and I don’t want to announce premature.”
Guyana and Venezuela currently have strained relations, with Venezuela looking to claim two thirds of Guyana’s territory in a controversial manner.
The claim also encompasses areas in Guyana – the Stabroek Block – in which US oil giant ExxonMobil recently found a significant deposit of oil estimated to be worth US$40B by Bloomberg.
As tensions flared between the two counties, Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro moved to recall the country’s Ambassador to Guyana Reina Margarita Arratia Diaz for “consultations.”
This happened 30 days after local activists protested for the Government of Guyana to declare Diaz as “persona non grata.”