Gunmen invade Nandy Park supermarket, escape with cash
– Proprietress kicked in face during robbery
Two armed men executed a broad daylight robbery on MS Hack and Sons Supermarket at Nandy Park, East Bank Demerara, on Sunday. The robbery reportedly occurred at about 12:50h.
Based on reports received, prior to the robbery, the two men entered the business establishment and enquired about Absolut Vodka but they were told that there was none and the proprietress, Florence Braithwaite, directed them to a shop over the East Bank Highway.
The men reportedly left but returned a short while later and held Braithwaite at gunpoint as they demanded cash. At the time of the robbery, two workers were in the supermarket. The two men proceeded to assault the woman after which they went into a drawer and collected over 300,000 before making good their escape on foot.
Speaking with Guyana Times, owner of the business, Mohamed S Hack explained that he was heading to the West Coast of Demerara to hand out hampers at a Mosque in observance of Ramadan. Whilst on his journey, he stated that he received a telephone call from his wife who was left managing the business informing him that she was robbed.
“She call and tell me that they beat she up for money and that I must come back”, the man stated. As he arrived home, he was told the men also held up his two workers and took away their mobile phone and jewellery.
The businessman highlighted that after committing the robbery, the armed men, who were not masked, walked over the road and went through an alley. The police were summoned to the scene and immediately launched a manhunt for the two men.
Nevertheless, Hack told Guyana Times that this is not the first time his establishment was robbed while noting that he had recently put up his business for sale. “The only thing left to do is to sell out and migrate… is several times now I get robbed and nothing came out of the police story… It comes a time, I get fed up and can’t take it anymore”, the frustrated man stated.
This robbery came hours after A & A Home Furnishing, located at Lot 333 Cummings Street, Alberttown, Georgetown, was robbed by two armed men – one of whom was an ex-employee.
The armed men held the employees at gunpoint and ordered them to lie on the ground. However, during the ordeal, the proprietor walked in the store and he was gun-butted.
During the robbery, the suspects broke a television system and disconnected the DVR from the CCTV surveillance system. The men carted off with an undisclosed sum of cash from the register.
Just a few days ago, the US State Department had warned its citizens about the crime situation in Guyana. In a statement on its website, the Department stated there is a frequency of violent crimes, commonly armed robbery and murder. It specifically highlighted that the police network is hindered to effectively alleviate these incidents due to the lack of resources.
“Violent crimes such as armed robbery and murder, is common. Local police lack the resources to respond effectively to serious criminal incidents,” the notice stated.
It further advised all travellers from the United States to be extra vigilant when visiting banks or ATMs and to avoid walking or driving in the night. Persons were also advised not to resist any robbery attempts they might encounter and desist from displaying signs of wealth, such as expensive watches or jewellery.
Meanwhile, one day after that advisory, the Government said that it is incorrect, adding that the country is a “safe place”.
This is according to Director General of the Ministry of the Presidency (MOTP), Joseph Harmon, who touted Guyana as a safe place to not only visit but invest.
“From the level of the Cabinet, I wish to assure all of our citizens, including those citizens who are abroad and are making decisions to travel to Guyana, that Guyana is a safe place. Guyana is a safe place to live, it’s a safe place to work, it’s a safe place to invest and that’s the word I wish to give to all persons who might be thinking twice as a result of this advisory”, he added.