Gov’t adding 17 more CCTV cameras in key areas


…Stabroek Market, Berbice Bridge, Lusignan Prisons targeted

GOVERNMENT is ‘ramping-up’ the Close Circuit Television (CCTV) high-technology security camera system to support crime prevention efforts by the Joint Services by adding an additional 17 camera locations around the country including more in the highly-congested Stabroek Market area, the crucial Berbice River Bridge and the Lusignan Prisons on the lower East Coast among other areas.

In a release, the Ministry of Public Telecommunication’s NDMA arm said the 17 new locations will bring the total number of cameras to 119 so far and these have been credited with solving a number of criminal activities around the country.

Major (rtd) Floyd Levi, Head of the National Data Management Authority (NDMA), said this week that the programme is being ramped-up under Safe City Solutions project being carried out in collaboration with the Chinese Government. Huawei Technologies, which is slowly emerging as one of the world’s leading high-technology supplier companies, is leading efforts with the NDMA to execute the US$37.6M project that would add a crucial electronic surveillance component to help police fight crime. The NDMA falls under the Ministry of Public Telecommunications.

Levi said new CCTV systems are being installed at the Berbice River Bridge in Region Five and another at the Palmyra Junction on the lower Corentyne. Additional sites being covered are the Mahaicony Bridge, Skeldon Market on the Upper Corentyne, Fort Wellington near the government complex housing the Police station, the magistrate’s courts and the Regional Democratic Council (RDC’s) office in the area, Enmore-Haslington on the East Coast, Melanie Damishana’s main junction, the busy Parika area, Anna Regina on the Essequibo Coast as well as Charity on the Pomeroon River, Soesdyke Junction, one at the entrance to North Ruimveldt and Aubrey Barker Road and an additional system at the Stabroek Market area near Water Street.

“These camera systems are nothing new to Guyana. We have had them for more than 10 years or so,” said Levi, noting that all 119 systems will all have Omni-directional cameras, allowing monitors to pan a large area, tilt the camera to obtain a better view and also to zoom in to get close-ups of activities ongoing. “So if the police detect something or want to look around, they have 360 degrees of visual freedom to check out on any given subject.”

The NDMA head noted that by all indications, the project will have no cost overruns and will come in under the original budget. This sign of proper budget management will then allow project engineers to use savings to acquire additional cameras.