8/06/2006

Jagdeo hands over land titles, extension to Amerindian communities...

GUYANA - President Bharrat Jagdeo handed over two land titles and one extension to Amerindian communities last week, telling them his government was to serve not to rule over them.

Cabinet approved titles to Kaburi in Region Seven (Cuyuni/Mazaruni) for 42 square miles and Fairview in Region Eight (Potaro/ Siparuni) for 82 square miles.

The extension of 62 miles was granted to Annai in Region Nine (Upper Takutu/Upper Essequibo), the Government Information Agency (GINA) reported.

This increases Annai, the largest Amerindian community in the North Rupununi with some 1,700 persons, to 247 square miles, GINA stated.

Jagdeo said he knew "how dear land issues" were to the Amerindians as they have been "custodians (of) these lands for time immemorial."

Also at the handing over ceremony at the Office of the President was Minister of Amerindian Affairs, Carolyn Rodrigues.

She thanked representatives of Iwokrama Inter-national Centre, Toolsie Persaud Limited (TPL), and the North Rupununi District Development Board as well as the Toshaos and communities for their mutual respect and dedication as their cooperation ensured that the process was successful.

Fairview is located within the Iwokrama rainforest and Kaburi is inside a TPL logging concession. Rodrigues said since 1992 land titles to Amerindian communities have increased from 74 to 85.

*Source: STARBROEK NEWS, Thursday, August 3rd 2006

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