Aug 02, 2011 News Comments Off on Thousands flock Hamburg Island on Emancipation Day
Thousands of Guyanese from all walks of life converged on Hamburg Beach, for the usual August Monday lime. Hamburg Island, also known as Tiger Island, lies between Wakenaam Island and the Essequibo Coast.
The island is privately owned by two Guyanese and is noted for its long beach which faces the Atlantic Ocean and is washed by heavy tide. No one knows exactly when this activity started but for over two decades Guyanese have been assembling on the island to spend the first Monday in August be it a working day or not.
The numbers have been growing annually and at present it has grown to thousands. The revelers travel to the island by sloops, ships, farming boats, speed boats and launches. There they engage in a variety of activities including games, dancing, swimming, drinking or just relaxing under the shady trees.
This year was no different and despite the heavy rainfall earlier in the morning, as the weather changed the numbers increased. Among those on the beach was Minister of Tourism, Maniram Prashad, who interacted freely with the revelers.
People traveled from as far as Linden, East Coast Demerara and the Essequibo Coast and islands to spend the day there. Many overseas-based Guyanese travel back to Guyana at this time of year so it will coincide with the beach activity.
Except for August Monday, the island is deserted all year round except for the farming activities which take place on the island.
Some people however, were taken by surprise this year when a police corporal who was armed with a receipt book went around to some boots collecting what he claimed was revenues for selling on the beach.
Some of the vendors protested because the receipt that was issued did not bear any stamp of the Guyana Revenue Authority. They also claimed that they were not told on whose behalf the money was being collected.
One vendor displayed a receipt for $10,000 which he claimed he paid to the police. He also alleges that the police was selective in who should pay the “revenue”.
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