Visa services will be resumed in Georgetown soon
Stabroek News
February 29, 2004

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Dear Editor,

It has come to my attention that a link has been made between the temporary closure of the Visa Section at the British High Commission and the accusations made by a Mr George Bacchus against the Government of Guyana. I would like to reassure the Guyanese public that there is no truth in this whatsoever.

On 9 December 2003 we advertised that our Visa office would be temporarily closed and that Guyanese should obtain their visas from our High Commissions in either Barbados or Trinidad and Tobago. We indicated that normal service would be resumed as soon as possible and we regretted any inconvenience to the Guyanese public. It remains our intention to resume visa-issuing operations here in Georgetown soon. We will advertise again when we are in a position to re-open.

In regard to the more recent allegations made by Mr. Bacchus, I made a statement to the press that was selectively reported. In answer to a direct question about whether the international community would intervene in the matter, I made it clear that it was not Britain's role to intervene or interfere in the internal affairs of Guyana. However, as a long-standing friend of Guyana, we were naturally concerned when allegations were made which appear to question the integrity of the Government. I expressed the hope that the Government would resolve this matter to the satisfaction of the Guyanese people. I did not personally question the integrity of President Jagdeo.

Britain remains an all-weather friend of Guyana and the Guyanese people.

Yours faithfully,

Stephen Hiscock

High Commissioner

British High Commission