Support Village Voice News With a Donation of Your Choice.
The National COVID-19 Task Force (NCTF) Secretariat has granted permission for 300 persons in Region Nine to vote in the Brazilian Municipal Elections in Brazil today, November 15.
Though the borders to the two countries remain closed due to the risk of transfer of the coronavirus, those desirous of voting have been allowed to do so between 07:00 hrs and 16:00 hrs.
In a letter sent to Region Nine Regional Chairman, Bryan Allicock on November 13, he was informed that the NCTF had granted approval and that the activity would be coordinated with the relevant authorities in Brazil and Guyana.
The Guyana Defence Force (GDF) and the Guyana Police Force (GPF) were required to set up a check point at the Takatu Bridge to monitor this activity in its entirety. Transit is permitted for November 15 only and PCR Test requirements for re-entry into Guyana on the same day have been waived.
However, persons reentering Guyana after November 15 will be required to present a negative PCR test. “We put all security people in place for monitoring and, on the other side, the Federals are looking at their side to see if they [persons crossing] are truly to vote over there or not. Those are the instructions to security over there. If they don’t have the proper documents, don’t allow them to cross,” Allicock said when contacted.
He said that more than 300 persons in the Region are qualified to vote but the number has been capped at 300. The Regional Chair noted that while some persons may want to go over Brazil for different reasons, casual cross travel is not being catered for at the moment.
In recent times, the Mayor of Bonfim Joner Chagas and authorities in Region Nine had developed a Border Intelligence Committee to respond to acts of illegal border crossings, smuggling and drug trafficking which could contribute to the spread of COVID-19. Allicock said that the relationship is still in place and both sides are sharing necessary information to curb the spread.
There have been at least 5,848,900 cases of COVID-19 cases in Brazil as of November 15. According to data from state governments, 165,658 people have died already. In Guyana, there have been over 4,700 cases and 139 deaths.