DEPUTY Head of the Customs Anti-Narcotics Unit (CANU), Lesley Ramlall, was, on Wednesday, sent on his outstanding leave which will carry him up to the expiration of his contract which may not be renewed, CANU sources confirmed.
Ramlall was instrumental in the expansion of CANU which now affords the unit a presence across the coastline as well as interior locations.
During his tenure, Guyana has seen significant reduction in the flow of narcotics in and out of Guyana.
CANU was also able to develop greater relations with regional and international partners which also led to the arrest of a major trafficker from Guyana.
More than three years after he was removed from office, James Singh has returned as the Head of the Customs Anti-Narcotics Unit (CANU).
In June 2017, Singh was officially notified of his removal from the post which had resulted from recommendations made by former President David Granger as well as a Commission of
Inquiry (CoI) conducted into the unit’s role in the interception and subsequent release of a cocaine-laden vessel.
On February 16, 2017, four Guyanese men were intercepted by members of the US and Trinidad and Tobago coastguards in a boat in international waters, about 70 nautical miles north of Suriname, with over four tonnes of cocaine, estimated to be worth a street value of over US$71.7M aboard the vessel.
Singh was subsequently asked to proceed on accumulated leave and on March 31, 2017, a CoI was set up to inquire into the circumstances surrounding the entry into, the interception, detention and subsequent release of an unnamed private maritime vessel in the sea space of the territory of Guyana.
However, Minister of Home Affairs, Robeson Benn has defended the rehiring of Singh whom he found to be “very professional”.