Guyana: At least 19 children killed in fire at a school dormitory

At least 19 “young people” in Guyana were killed in a fire that raged overnight from Sunday to Monday at a girls’ school dormitory in Mahdia, a small country in northeastern South America.

“It’s a big disaster. It’s terrible, it’s painful”, President Irfan Ali lamented, stressing that the country “implemented massive medical relief (…) and took care of the injured”. Special arrangements have been made for”.

According to a statement issued by the fire brigade on Monday, “14 youths died on the spot, while five died in Mahdia district hospital. The condition of two children remains critical, while four are seriously injured.” Are.”

According to the same source, six of these wounded were transferred “by plane to Georgetown” in the capital, while “five others are still hospitalized in Mahdia and ten others are under observation”.

According to the text of the firefighters, “firefighters managed to save about twenty students by blowing a hole in the northeast wall of the building.” The windows of the concrete building had security bars.

A total of 63 students were inside the building at the time of the accident.

In a previous report by the government, “20 people died” in a fire that broke out in “the dormitory of the secondary school of Mahdia” in the center of the country.

The fire, whose origin is not known, started in the girls’ dormitory where “young people aged 11-12 to 16-17 live”, said a person who was on site with help. The building is completely gutted with walls blackened by the flames. The tin roof fell.

The government said that five planes flew to Mahdia to “help provide additional medical equipment to regional health authorities and conduct medical evacuations”.

At the end of the morning, about fifty people expressed their anger after the tragedy in Chenapau, a village near Mahdia, where some of the victims are from, told AFP Michael McGarrel, reached by telephone and who lost two of his nieces.

– “Thorough Investigation” –

“We need to compensate for our losses,” read a sign. Another poster read, “Bars are for prisoners. We want justice.”

“Pain, suffering, trauma… who will be held responsible? What are we going to tell the parents?” McGarrel, an activist with the NGO Amerindian Peoples’ Association (APA), has often clashed with the government over land rights, gold panning and most recently the sale of carbon credits to the US oil company Hess.

The city of Mahdia is located approximately 200 km south of Georgetown. The area is affected by heavy rains.

Opposition MP Natasha Singh-Lewis said, “Our hearts go out to the families and loved ones affected by this tragedy.”

“We call on the authorities to conduct a thorough investigation into the cause of the fire and provide a detailed report on exactly what happened. We must understand how this terrible and deadly incident happened and do what we can to prevent more such incidents. All necessary measures should be taken.” tragedy from happening in the future,” he added.

A small poor English-speaking country of 800,000 inhabitants, Guyana, a former Dutch and then British colony, has the world’s largest per capita oil reserves and rapid growth is expected in the coming years with the exploitation of these reserves which are still The beginning is at your level.

Experts estimate that there are approximately 15 billion barrels of oil reserves associated with significant gas reserves in the Guyana-Suriname Basin.

Add a Comment