Following engagement with the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC), the Ministry of Natural Resources has advised that as part of the preparations for the restarting of operations at the Karouni Mine operated by Troy Resources Guyana Inc., the GGMC has guided the management of the company to proceed with the previously ordered and agreed remedial work to be done at its Hicks #1 mining area.
These works were previously ordered following the demise of Ryan Taylor on October 8, 2019, which resulted in a Cease Work Order (CWO) being issued on the following day to facilitate an investigation and to ensure that no mining was proceeded with until corrective works were carried out.
Minister of Social Protection, Ms. Amna Ally, on October 10, rescinded the CWO ordered by her junior minister, Mr. Keith Scott.
In a letter to Troy Resources’ General Manager Eric Olson, it was stated, “I, Amna Ally, Minister of Social Protection, hereby wish to notify you that the letter, dated October 10, 2019, under the hand of Honourable Keith Scott, Minister within the Ministry of Social Protection is hereby rescinded…
“We are concerned with the operations of Troy Resources Guyana Inc., as well as the Occupational Safety and Health Matters connected therewith. This matter will be addressed shortly.”
It is unclear at this time whether Keith Scott was sanctioned to impose the order upon the mining company.
For the time being, the Commission has directed Troy Resources, as stated in the CWO issued to the company, to continue with only remedial works in the Hicks #1 extension of the Karouni Gold Project.
Upon completion of such work, the company must inform the Commission, which would then see the Commission conducting an inspection and making the necessary recommendations for recommencement of full operations.
The company has been cooperating with the GGMC and the resumption of full operations is expected.
At this time, an investigation into the death of Geologist Ryan Taylor has been completed by the GGMC and the Ministry of Social Protection’s Occupational Safety and Health Department.
The respective reports will be the subject of a meeting between the Ministries and the GGMC, which will be conducted shortly. The findings of the final report will be made public in due course.
Following Taylor’s death, President of the People’s United &General Workers Union (PU&GWU), Mr. Lincoln Lewis, during a press briefing on October 14, stated that the passing of the mining worker, Ryan Taylor, is a grim reminder of the potential danger by the foreign company and the lack in strict inspection and enforcement of safety standards by the GGMC—the agency which is charged with this responsibility under the Mining Act and the Departments of Labour/ Occupational Safety and Heath, under the Social Protection Ministry.
“We hold those at GGMC and Ministry of Social Protection equally accountable along with the employer for the conditions of work which Ryan Taylor and his colleagues are subjected to working under. It was not unknown to them,” the President stated.
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