Internet Radio

Donald Ramotar defends fired drugs czar; says DEA had confidence in him

James Singh

Former President Donald Ramotar Friday afternoon defended James Singh who has been fired as Head of the Customs Anti-Narcotics Unit (CANU), saying the former drugs czar had a very fruitful relationship with the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

“I was one who had asked the DEA to set up an office here. Whenever I met with the officers of the DEA in Guyana and had conversations with them, they were always in very high praise of the work that Mr. James Singh was doing here in our country with CANU and how much that helped them in doing their work there in the United States and being able to put a lot of major drug people away and behind bars,” Ramotar told Demerara Waves Online News.

One of the terms of reference of a Commission of Inquiry into the detention and subsequent release of a suspected cocaine-laden vessel between February and 11 and 14, 2017 was whether any foreign power had anything to do with the operation.

Singh earlier Friday confirmed  to Demerara Waves Online News that government has informed him of his removal as CANU Head.

Minister of State Joseph Harmon said President David Granger has instructed Public Security Minister, Khemraj Ramjattan to remove Singh who has been at the helm of that agency for at least 10 years.

Ramotar said he was not entirely surprised at Singh’s removal because it was consistent with the David Granger administration’s preference for “party loyalty” instead of professionalism and loyalty to Guyana. The former Guyanese leader hailed the former CANU Chief as someone who was committed to the fight against narco-trafficking. “When I was President, I can testify to the fact that James Singh worked tirelessly and with great results,” he said.

The former Guyanese leader, who said he would prefer to hear Singh respond to those terms of reference of the Commission of Inquiry, contended that his removal from the leadership of CANU is an incentive to drug traffickers. “All the talk that this government is talking about fighting drugs, removing James Singh seems to be a concession to the drug barons in Guyana,” he said.

ex-President Donald Ramotar

Retired Major General, Atherly has been acting head of CANU which is part of the Ministry of Public Security. Since then, the administration has said that there have been more drug busts in Guyana than in destination countries.

Government plans to set up a multi-agency National Anti-Narcotics Agency (NANA) comprising of representatives from CANU, Guyana Revenue Authority and the Guyana Police Force.

  • Emile_Mervin

    The PPP regime, starting with Cheddie, always saw drugs as a North American problem. This view became more pronounced under Jagdeo, as drug smugglers operated with impunity, acquiring wealth, starting businesses, building luxury houses and importing luxury vehicles.

    When the US Government named Roger Khan in a State Department report as a major smuggler, the Jagdeo regime ignored the report. It was the most potent sign that drug smuggling was being facilitated by the authorities in Guyana.

    Naming James Singh as head of CANU, after the firmer acting head, Orville Nedd and other CANU operatives were fired in 2008 for failing a polygraph test, was a political appointment with no drugs apprehension plan other than a few small time busts.

    Jagdeo and his minions at Freedom House should be polygraphed on how they came by their wealth, and if they fail, then they should lose it all.

    • Col123

      Another coalie ass kissing brotha commenting about them coolies!

    • Danny Persaud

      Are u available for a debate with the champion BJ…

  • Gtloyal

    After testimonies such as that given by confessed and convicted dealer Datagram, the “… detention and subsequent release of a suspected cocaine-laden vessel …” etc, it is in the best interest of Mr Singh and the nation, that he be removed. During Ramotar’s presidency the DEA may have had confidence in him (to give the ex-president the benefit of the doubt) but with recent developments that may have changed. Anyway, it’s not surprising to see the PPP defending the well known position, in relation to drugs, that they maintained during their rule.

    • Col123

      You have faith in coalies who are drug pushers… you guy are so desperate at kissing those coalie asses to the point where it doesn’t surprise me . When on earth do we believe those coolies?…, but we kiss those white folks butt.. what can go wrong with kissing those coolies?

      • Gtloyal

        More bs.

  • rand

    James Singh was serving the interest of the ppp clique and he knows that will eventually be his downfall ,look at his track record when the ppp was in office and see what he has accomplished ,James you are a servant of the people and not of any party or organization