By Michel Outridge and Shirley Thomas
GUYANA Power & Light (GPL) Chief Security Officer Clifford Peters, alias Malvin, of Lot 48 xNx Essequibo Street, Lamaha Springs, was shot dead yesterday while on a mission to oversee the removal of illegal electricity connections in Lamaha Park, East La Penitence, another part of Georgetown.
A Police report said it happened about 10:30 hrs when Peters headed a team of employees from the utility engaged in the exercise and one of them, Alan Savory was approached by two men. An argument developed and Savory called out to Peters who intervened and was shot in his head and chest by one of the duo.
The two reportedly took away Petersx licensed revolver and escaped on a motorcycle.
His distraught wife of 36 years, Eileen Peters, did not go to her nursing job on receiving the news. She told the Guyana Chronicle she had just sat down to have lunch around noon when her sister-in-law, telephoned and said the injured man was at Davis Memorial Hospital.
However, the caller did not mention that he had died but, a few minutes after, Mrs. Peters said she received another message informing her of his death and that the body was at Lyken Funeral Parlour, Norton and John Streets, Newburg, also in the city.
The now widow said, in all her 35-odd years as a nurse, she had witnessed many deaths but none of it had prepared her for the killing of her husband who had, hours earlier, left home in good health.
Accompanied by other family members, she rushed down to the funeral home to view her husbandxs corpse.
xIt was not a good sight,x she confessed.
Meanwhile, GPL expressed shock and sadness, following the brutal murder of Peters while on duty.
The company, in a press statement, confirmed that the shooting took place in Lamaha Park, at about 10:30 hrs.
GPL said Peters, a former Senior Superintendent of Police, was executing his duties as a member of the Loss Reduction Field Service team.
The statement said the team was removing illegal connections when they were ambushed and came under gunfire attack.
GPL said Peters was forced to the ground and shot at point blank range in the head and died on the spot.
Savory, GPL said, was also forced to the ground with a gun pointed at him but he managed to escape while two other employees in the group witnessed the murder from in a GPL vehicle.
GPL noted that, at one of its press conferences led by the Prime Minister Samuel Hinds last Thursday, the issue of electricity theft was highlighted and Chairman of the Board, Mr. Winston Brassington reported that over the period 2007/2008, some 23,000 illegal connections were discovered and that, despite approximately 800 arrests, only two persons were sent to jail.
The utility routinely carries out raids to detect illegal connections and, in 2007 and 2008, at least 370 were executed and the one yesterday was among many Peters led.
GPL extended its condolences to the Peters family and again appealed to persons with information on others who may have perpetuated the xbrutal and incomprehensible actx to contact the Police.
Peters who spent 38 years in the Guyana Police Force, retired in 2006 at the rank of Senior Superintendent and would have celebrated his 36th wedding anniversary on June 30.
He also leaves to mourn his mother, Edna, six children, two brothers, five sisters, three grandchildren and other relatives.