By Fareeza Haniff
[www.inewsguyana.com] – The Ministry of Home Affairs has recruited experts/specialists to fix the deficiencies which exist in the country’s weak 911 system.
This is according to subject Minister, Clement Rohee who told reporters on Monday, March 10 that Cabinet approved a “tidy sum” of money to hire the experts from the United States.
Rohee however could not say how much money exactly was approved. The experts visited Guyana last week and visited a number of police stations across the country.
“I felt it was necessary to bring them here – at great cost – for them to do some rectification of the 911 system because the complaints were numerous, therefore we couldn’t sit on our hands and do nothing about it,” the Home Affairs Minister said.
He explained that Guyana does not have the capacity to fix the issue, thus he recourse to the specialists.
“Apparently, we don’t have the capacity at the national level in Guyana to correct this deficiency so I thought it was necessary to bring persons from outside since we don’t have the national capacity here to address this problem.”
According to Rohee, the experts have proposed that Guyana implement a single emergency number as opposed to having more than one, as is the case presently.
“If it’s a fire you call the same number, if it’s a police request you call the same number, if there’s an accident you call the same number. We will study whether to keep the 911 separate from 912,” Rohee explained.
Only this morning, iNews reported that that a couple lost their home in a fire after calls to the 911 system went unanswered. The fire occurred at Deobrian Street, Prashad Nagar.
In December 2013, Minister Rohee expressed his frustration with the issue.
“I am fed up with this whole situation of poor performance of the 911 system. This issue has come up at several meetings….I don’t know if it is a technological problem but I know it is not a problem with clerical staff,” Rohee had said then.