70-year-old man swims across Berbice River

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Ashraf Ally

– aims for Essequibo River Monday

SEVENTY-year-old Ashraf Ally successfully swam across the Berbice River on Saturday. Ally, nicknamed “River Conqueror,” made the journey from the New Amsterdam Stelling end of the river and took 40 minutes to end his journey in the vicinity of the Blairmont Stelling .

According to Ally, the swim was in honour of the Berbice High School 100th anniversary celebrations and also to mark Guyana’s 50th anniversary of independence .

Ally is a former student of the Berbice High School and graduated in 1967. He was also once head of the Science Department of the school.
“It’s something I can do for hours and felt like a normal exercise,” Ally said of Saturday’s swim.

The man believes swimming is a good form of exercise.
In 1979 , the made the first trip across the Berbice River, while in 1998, he made a trip across the Corentyne River. In 1999, Ally mastered the swim across the Demerara River.

The “River Conqueror” also swam across Lake Mainstay and the Canje River on numerous occasions.

Even though this was a major accomplishment for Ally, his dream is to swim across the mighty Essequibo River.

This he will attempt on Monday when the school celebrates its anniversary.

Ally, who now resides overseas, was cheered on by many, including Region Six Chairman David Armogan, the Police Divisional Commander Ian Amsterdam, and close relatives and friends.

Ally never thought he’d need the boat which was on standby in case of an emergency.

(Nafeeza Yahya)