By Fareeza Haniff
[www.inewsguyana.com] – Following the disappearance of Gyaneshwarie Laleta Sivinand during visit to the Kaieteur Falls on September 01, the administration will soon be implementing new measures for the protection of tourists.
Some of these measures include zero tolerance for alcohol consumption, more tour guides and the possibility of constructing rails. These ideas were discussed during a meeting with Minister of Governance, Raphael Trotman, and Minister of Tourism, Cathy Hughes representatives of The Tourism and Hospitality Association of Guyana (THAG), Air Services Limited (ASL), the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA), the Protected Areas Commission (PAC) and the Guyana Police Force (GPF).
“We’re in the process of refining and defining what it is we’re going to do, but suffice to say in the interim, we’ve gotten the benefit of the Guyana Police Force’s views; we’ve decided to introduce firstly a manifest system, so every passenger who comes has to display identification, be it as passport or National ID,” Minister Trotman told reporters.
The manifest will be handed over to the park ranger on arrival at the Kaieteur National Park. Trotman explained that there will be a minimum of two guides on the ground, one leading the tour and another at the rear.
“We’re ensuring that there is a zero tolerance for anyone wanting to enter the water…we look at the possibility of putting rails; we are to speak to managers of Parks in other parts of the world, Costa Rica, Brazil, perhaps Venezuela and as far away as America and Canada if it’s necessary,” the Governance Minister said.
He further explained that the Police Force has offered to have officers accompany tourists when necessary. Meanwhile, as it relates to the missing woman, Trotman noted that no determination has been made as to what happened to her.
“At this point in time, we can’t say how she came about missing, whether it is by misadventure, accident or by any deliberate action.”
The Minister could not say if she experienced personal problems at home. iNews had reported that the woman was part of a group of persons on a tour, organised by a local tour operator – Air Services Limited. Reports indicate that Sivinand was seen crying while on the phone on the plane; however when the aircraft landed at the Falls, she appeared perky.
It has been reported that the flight had a total of nine passengers and sometime during the tour, she was discovered to be missing. Contrary to what the woman had told people on the trip, she is neither a doctor nor an environmentalist. As a matter of fact, she is a former employee of Laparkan and Singer’s.