PNCRs Response to the Guyana Flood Situation

From:         The General Secretary, Peoples National Congress Reform

To:              All Party Overseas Groups

Matter:       The PNCRs Response to the Guyana Flood Situation  

Date:         January 31 to February 4, 2005

Re: Flood Update


(A) Food Distribution


  1. The PNCR accelerated the distribution of food to Guyanese affected by the flood during the period January 31 to February 4, 2005. On January 31 itself, hampers were distributed from HBTV Channel 9 (Party Distribution Centre) to residents of Agricola, while meals were served at Laing Avenue and breakfast in Plaisance. Also on this date, the Leader of the PNCR, Mr. Robert Corbin, MP, distributed 30 hampers on the East Coast, while Mrs. Carol Corbin distributed 35 hampers in the same area. The next day, February 1, the Party Leader again distributed 120 hampers on the East Coast and 100 hampers to the Rastafarians.
  1. On February 3, again from the Party Distribution Centre at HBTV Channel 9, 23 hampers were given to the David Rose School for the Handicap. Hampers were also given out to the residents of Anns Grove and Melanie Damishana. 
  1. On February 4, 688 hampers were given out by the Party in the following quantities to the areas indicated:


    • Campbellville/Newton/ Kitty
    • West Ruimveldt
    • West Ruimveldt Estate
    • Middle Road
    • East Ruimveldt
    • Side Line Dam
    • Laing Avenue
    • East La Penitence
    • North Ruimveldt (Middle)
    • North Ruimveldt (Back)
    • Festival City (Tucville squatting)
    • Werk-en-Rust (Camp/ Louisa Row/ Norton) (Judith)
    • Wortmanville (Princess Street)
    • Meadow Brook Squatting Area
    • North East La Penitence 
    • Castello/ Walker Terrace
  1. On February 5, 10 hampers were given out to residents at Channel 9 to residents of various parts of the city.


(B) Water 

On February 3, the Leader of the Party distributed a total of 45 cases of water to the Plaisance Community High School, residents of this area and Vryheids Lust, while Mrs. Deborah Backer distributed 28 cases to the St. Pauls Primary School. 

(C) Health 

  1. The health report for January 31, pointed to the fact that the numbers in the health team had diminished considerably. In the meantime, the Caribbean Epidemiological Centre (CAREC) has sent in two (2) members of its staff, an Epidemiologist and the Pharmacologist, to do an accurate assessment of the types of diahorreal epidemics usually seen after floods. Up to the time of this report, CAREC officials were in the fields seeking to carry out this assessment. 
  1. The report pointed to concerns about cases of Leptospirosis, which is a water borne disease caused by bacteria and which can be contracted during and after flooding. It is usually found in both rural and urban areas among wild and domestic animals. In Guyana, the common sources of the infection are urine excreted by rats, dogs, pigs and cattle. 
  1. On February 1, reports to the Party by its main medical adviser, Dr. Dalgleish Joseph, MD, MP, yielded the following facts:

        2,412 patients have been seen by the medical teams consisting of government officials, the PNCR and other volunteers. This may not be the final figure as other members of the team have not submitted their reports as yet. The areas visited by the team were the following areas: 

      West Bank Demerara
      Canal Polder No. 1 & 2
  1. A medical team, which included Dr. Dalgleish Joseph, MD, MP and a number of Cuban Doctors, visited the following areas on February 5, 2005:
      Canal Polder No. 1 & 2, West Bank Demerara.
      Meten-Meer-Zorg, West Coast Demerara.
      East Coast Demerara

The medical team was on the alert for signs of the water borne disease, Leptospirosis, which has already affected several residents of the East Coast and Georgetown. To date there have been confirmed reports of some 24 persons having tested positively for Leptospirosis. A number of patients have also visited the private hospitals and may have been confirmed with the water borne disease. It also monitored the situation to determine whether other water borne diseases are present on the East Coast and the other areas indicated. The medical team was concerned that there might be evidence of Typhoid, another water borne disease. 

The medical team includes a number of Foreign Technical Specialist including Epidemiologists, who are experts in disaster preparedness. Apparently there is some level of frustration in coordinating their activities with the government.  

The report has also noted that the Guyana Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC) had run out of testing kits for Leptospirosis against the background that 50 patients were waiting to be tested. Those who have tested positive for this disease have been mostly members of the male population and all the patients who have died so far have been men between the ages of 27 and 53 years of age.  

Persons who have tested positive for Leptospirosis are residents in the following areas:

      East Ruimveldt
      La Bonne Intention (LBI)
      Mon Repos Squatting Area
      Better Hope
      Hadfield Street

(D) Loss of Crops and Livestocks 

A report of February 4 which has been received by the Party Secretariat has underscored the extent to which the farming communities in the Mahaica Creek, Mahaica and Cane Grove areas have been affected by the flooding. Large amounts of cash crops, live stocks and poultry and rice cultivation have been destroyed. As of Friday, February 4, 2005, the Communities to the East of Mahaica, which includes Mahaicony / Abary and many other Communities of West Coast Berbice, have also started to feel the effects of the flood. As of today, February 7, 2005, the Government is unclear as to when the situation in any one of these communities can be abated.

Peoples National Congress Reform
Flood Crisis Centre
10 Camp Street,