Local geologist says large investors ‘hog land’ leaving no room for local small scale miners
Reunion Gold Representative Rayon Abrams has voiced frustrations on difficulties for small-scale Guyanese miners trying to acquire land for prospecting and/or exploration activities in Guyana.
During Mining Week 2022, MTV News Update spoke to a young Guyanese professional in the sector who raised issues on struggles small-scale miners face when trying to acquire land.
Geologist at Reunion Gold Rayon Abrams said, “Our company for instance is an international company, a Canadian Company. So when companies come here to try and get property to explore, all of these properties are already taken by persons’ decades ago. People just holding on to some properties, nobody’s doing work on them. They might even be paying the lease or whatever they have to pay to GGMC so people are hogging up land.”
The Reunion Gold Corporation conducts activities in the Cuyuni Mining District, some 95 km west of Georgetown and is comprised of 10,880 acres of mineral rights held by local Guyanese entrepreneurs.
Part of article 35.2 of the 1989 Mining Act states; Where a prospecting licence would otherwise cease to be in force, then, by virtue of this subsection, the licence shall, unless sooner determined by surrender or cancellation under this Act., continue in force in respect of any parcel to which the licence relates.
This means that while lands are available to anyone, a licence remains in full force and effect until a formal decision is made by the GGMC, allowing no formal limit on land ownership.
“There needs to be a different system whereby persons who are now trying to get into this industry, let’s say; young Guyanese, can come on board and say okay I can probably get a plot of land here or here. But when you search the map there’s really nothing available for persons, you need to buy from other persons.
“So I think GGMC needs to really look at this and persons who are not paying their dues, take these lands from them and give it to these people who will really help and contribute to GGMC.”