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…had disappeared, according to Harmon
The boat with an undisclosed number of dead human remains was expected to arrive at port Georgetown during the wee hours of Tuesday morning, however, when an interagency task force went out to the Atlantic Ocean to tow the boat in, it reportedly “disappeared.”
During his weekly virtual press conference on Tuesday, Leader of the Opposition, Joseph Harmon said upon learning of the discovery, the A Partnership for National Unity + Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) made a number of inquiries.
“We were expecting the boat to be brought ashore, like all Guyanese [we] felt that once the boat was discovered…it [would have] been brought ashore… [But] suddenly today we heard that the boat disappeared. The boat was being towed to the port and it disappeared but I understand now that they had sent out some helicopters and so they have now relocated it, and it is now being towed to the port,” Harmon said in response to a question posed by Village Voice News.
In a statement late Monday night, the Maritime Administration Department (MARAD), while confirming reports that a boat with a number of dead people was discovered at sea, said the origin of the vessel and nationality of the now dead people are unknown at the moment.
“At present, the origin of the vessel and the nationality of the persons aboard are unknown,” MARAD said in a statement late Monday night.
It said at approximately 14:04hrs on Monday, February 15, 2021, the department received information that a small open boat, with supposedly lifeless bodies on board was drifting at sea, approximately 112 nautical miles from Georgetown.
The relevant stakeholders were informed; and in a collaborative effort, sought to find mechanisms to get the vessel into Port Georgetown, MARAD said.
“The Maritime Emergency Rescue Coordination Centre was operationalized, and our international partners were contacted to collaborate on the response and for information sharing. Stakeholders in the private sector, both offshore and onshore, are coordinating with MARAD for the provision of assets to secure and safely tow the vessel into Port Georgetown,” it explained.
According to MARAD, it is a highly sensitive and delicate operation and all necessary precaution are being adhere to.
On Tuesday, attempts by Village Voice News to secure an update from MARAD proved futile.