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Almost 50 participants from various pest control companies on Friday graduated from the Ministry of Agriculture’s pest control certification programme.This programme lasted two weeks and is the first of its kind in Guyana.Leslie Munroe, Chairman of the Pesticides and Toxic Chemicals Control Board (PTCCB) said that this initiative was aimed at training the pest control operators to execute their duties in a more informed and knowledgeable manner.“People must be able to read labels and understand what the labels say. Some people expected more from the training, too, and I am also hopeful that the next batch will also have knowledge. But everyone had passed the evaluation conducted.”It was noted that more often than not, persons are not aware of the chemicals that these operators would use in their homes, offices or other buildings.On numerous occasions the pest control operators do their jobs without explaining to their customers/clients about these chemicals and their effects, and advise them accordingly. This training also aimed at correcting this issue.Minister of Agriculture, Dr. Leslie Ramsammy, stated that persons engaged in pest control must be trained in this field and certified, because in the past this has been executed in an “unregulated manner”.Kaieteur News was told that this programme is intended to be run across the country annually, to ensure that pest control operators receive the necessary training.This is expected to result in making homes, transportation services (airplanes, boats, minibuses etc), schools and businesses clean and safe, as well as have safe practices of pest control.“Guyana has lived in the past for too long but has been trying to become a modernized place. Nobody thinks of buses and boats being subjected to pest control, but they must be. We are being more rigid in the implementation of pest control certification,” he said.According to Dr. Ramsammy, the Pesticides and Toxic Chemicals Act was signed into law in the year 2000 and in 2004, regulations became part of that law.Last year, the Agriculture Ministry had developed a pest control manual and during the month of September the manual was launched.Based on this manual, a curriculum was developed for training pest control operators.“Their work is not only to apply the pesticides but also engage clients and people exposed. Pesticides used have potential risks, therefore no pesticide can be used in Guyana unless it is registered”,, added Dr. Ramsammy.Agencies which took part in the training programme were Rentokil Initial, Pestex,, Pest Control Plus, Target Services,, Miracle Extermination, Rid o Pes, Terminate Pest Control, Killet, Door 2 Door, Zenith, Terminex Cleaning & Extermination Services, Terminex Pest Control, Safe Premises Pest Control and BDL Pest Control.


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