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The President responds to MPs’ inquiries regarding the cyanide issue

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At a public session of parliament, President Chandrikapersad Santokhi spoke on the usage of cyanide in small-scale gold mining. In the highest council of State, members of Parliament have previously asked the government questions. The head of state observes that a kind of tolerated policy has been in place recently. “Now, as a society, but also as a government, we have been confronted with social unrest that has arisen as a result of the application and use of cyanide in various mining activities,” the head of state stated in the National Assembly on Tuesday, June 13.

The head of state says that the problem is high on the government’s agenda and that some steps have already been made. “The government has implemented actions. Legally, it is obvious that cyanide is illegal. According to President Santokhi, the nation is occasionally invaded by several chemical agents, some of which contain cyanide. The government is dedicated to making sure that those components or chemicals are correctly identified. It has already been assigned to conduct a national and international laboratory investigation. Therefore, legislation would need to outlaw the various narcotics, the head of government stressed in front of lawmakers.

President Santokhi emphasizes that no use of cyanide should take place in small-scale gold mining. “Detection, protection and control will be stepped up. Cooperation with neighboring countries to detect and tackle smuggling will be intensified.” He indicates that large quantities of hazardous substances such as mercury and cyanide are being smuggled in. This requires effective cooperation with neighboring countries.

The head of state has informed the council that the cyanide found has been seized in various places and will be transported and stored in a safe location in a responsible manner. “In consultation with experts – also from abroad – we will examine how the cyanide can be destroyed in a responsible manner. In addition, the government has had samples drawn from the water from various areas in the interior. The water samples have been analyzed by local institutes, including NIMOS, and have now also been sent for analysis to a foreign institute,” the head of government clarifies. The Minister of Natural Resources has further informed the House of Representatives about the results of the investigation.

 

 

 

 

 

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