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Golden Jubilee Tattoo

Thousands turned out to witness the event, packing into the Playfield at Base Camp Ayangana, to secure a vantage point, while yet many more stood on the streets outside to witness the Military Tattoo put on by the local military men and women.
“Tattoo”, the traditional signal given originally by drum beat and latterly by bugle call. This signal warned soldiers to return to their quarters for the night. In garrison towns, innkeepers turned off the liquor taps and the drum continued to beat for half an hour, the time allowed for the soldiers to find their way home.
However, the custom eventually developed into a ceremonial performance of military music by massed bands, a few hours after sunset. After the First World war, the ceremony of Tattoo was developed to include the military displays with which the name is now associated, but which have no connection, apart from the music, with the original function of the ceremony.
The first military tattoo in then British Guiana was held at Eve Leary in 1920 by the British Guiana Militia. The performance included personnel from the Infantry, Artillery and school children. The second tattoo was held in 1963 on the occasion of the seventh anniversary of the Guyana Volunteer Force. The tradition of hosting military tattoos was continued by the Guyana Defence Force, and in 1972 a tattoo was organized as part of the anniversary celebrations.
Other tattoos were successfully held on the occasion of the 20th Anniversary in 1985, 30th Anniversary in 1995, 40th Anniversary in 2005, and the 45th Anniversary in 2010. This year as [art of the 50th Golden Jubilee Anniversary another spectacular military Tattoo was held under the theme “Commemorating the past, Celebrating the Present and Carving the Future”


XGDF Association of Newyork Calls on Chief of Staff

XGDF Association of New York, paid a courtesy call on Chief-of-Staff, Brigadier Mark Phillips during the month of the Guyana Defence Force, Golden Jubilee Anniversary. During the visit the team presented the COS with a plaque.

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Lance Corporal Daniella Castillon is Miss GDF 2015

Miss Sports Department, Lance Corporal (LCPL), Daniella Castillon is Miss. Guyana Defence Force (GDF) 2015! She was crowned at the finals of the Ms GDF Pageant 2015 which culminated with elegance and pageantry at the National Cultural Centre on Wednesday, November 11.

Outstanding delegates who also copped prizes follows; Miss training Corps, (LCPL) Letitia Miles copped the first runner-up and the best fitness title, Ms Base Camp Stephenson, PTE Fomba Ramsay copped the second runner-up and best talent positions, Ms Air Corp, (LCPL) Tiffany Smith gained the third runner up and best body title, Ms G6 Branch, (LCPL) Alicia Jack, coveted the fourth runner-up position and the Ms congeniality title, And Ms Base Camp Ayanganna, (LCPL) Carlesia Laundry was adjudged for best smile.

Following the contestants’ self-introductions, excitement escalated throughout the evening as several performances including the contestants’ swimsuit display, a rousing ‘pose down’ by bodybuilder and current Mr. GDF, Sergeant Davis of 31 SF Sqn and a dance sequence by members of the National School of Dance set the mood for the highly anticipated Evening Gown and Intelligence segments of the pageant. The contestants were resplendent in gowns (some by local designers) and, following the announcement of the final five, it was on to the deciding question of the intelligence segment. The judges made their decision and the placements of the final five were announced with LCPL Castillon emerging as the winner. She was crowned by the former Ms. GDF (2012), Sergeant Shamekia Devonish, and bringing to an end what was truly a night of beauty, grace, intelligence and glamour.



Brazilian Ambassador, His Excellency Lineu Pupo De Paula, today handed over $26M in equipment to GDF Chief Of Staff, Brigadier Mark Phillips, at Base Camp Stephenson. The donated equipment, is the outcome of continued government to government cooperation between Brazil and Guyana, and particularly, between the countries militaries.

The military aid package, consists of eight ARUA 600 Aluminium boats, each outfitted with a Mercury 2-stroke, 40HP electric-start, gasoline outboard motors; 204 Milspec NORMAM5 Jungle warfare life jackets; 200 Ploymer magazine unloaders; 6 military compasses, 20 GPSMAP62s GPS receivers, and one CASE SV185 Bobcat with accessories. This equipment will enhance the training and operational capacity of the GDF, at Colonel Robert Mitchell Jungle and Amphibious Training School (CRMJATS) at Makouria.

Speaking briefly of the donation, which is almost like a 50th birthday gift for the GDF, Ambassador De Paula referenced the long standing cooperation between Brazil and Guyana and said that more has to be done to continue building stronger relations. “We need to go further. We already have military instructors and materials available, but we must look for more ways to improve co-operation,” he said.


Brazilian Military Attaché Colonel Oswaldo Romāo, explained that the reality of the military aid package stems from the fruitful discussions between the GDF and the Brazilian Military, at the 2014 First Bilateral Working Group cacaus. He referenced the coperation between the Brazilian and Guyanese militaries which hails from 1996. “It is an honour to present this equipment which will enhance and impact the training povidedat the GDF’s Jungle warfare school,” he said.

GDF Chief of Staff, Brigadier Mark Phillips, thanked the government and people of Brazil as well as the Brazilian Armed Forces, for their unwavering commitment to aiding the GDF in enhancing the delivery of military jungle training. “This is concrete proof of the ongoing security cooperation between our nations. CRMJATS will be better equipped and this equipment will agument the work of your instructors who are with us and who have aided in improving the delivery of training at our primere jungle training school,” he said, “this will help to move forward, our programme to develop JATS as a Centre of Excellence in jungle training not only for the GDF but for any other country which needs to benefit from such a facility. My highest regards are extended to Maj General Luis Schons, whose promise is now a reality. We are assured that security co-operation between our states and militaries is in good hands as we continue to work together to strengthen our relations.”

Following the handing over of the equipment, at which Officers and ranks of the GDF and the Brazilian Armed Forces were present, there was a demonstration of some of the equipment.




The Guyana Defence Force, in conjunction with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), recently hosted a two-day seminar for Trainers, on International Humanitarian Law (IHL), for senior officers. The purpose of the seminar was to provide those officers with the necessary tools so that they could teach ranks under their command about aspects of IHL

IHL, also known as laws of war and laws of armed conflict, is the legal framework applicable to situations of armed conflict and occupation, with its principal purpose being to limit the effects of armed conflict on the combatants and affected civil populace.

The seminar was facilitated by Mr Peter Evans and Ms. Alexandra Ortiz from the ICRC, and saw the participation of 22 senior officers of the GDF.

In his opening remarks at the seminar, Chief of Staff, Brigadier General Mark Phillips spoke about the importance and timeliness of this training, to the ranks of the GDF and exhorted the participants to dedicating themselves to gaining a thorough understanding of the information shared, and the necessary methodologies which would enable them to effectively impact their subordinates.

According to ICRC Armed Forces delegate, Mr Pete Evans, the aim was to ensure that the officers understood critical processes underlying and mandated by IHL, and also aid them in acquiring the techniques necessary for teaching others the relevant subject matter. “It was a privilege to work with this group of officers. The material presented was quite much but they grasped the concepts very quickly and articulated quite knowledgeably on various aspects during the programme,” he said. “Because this seminar was about training people to train others, the focus was on several practical exercises designed to highlight how well the participants assimilated the information and were able to transmit it coherently to others.”

Deputy Chief of Staff (ag) Colonel George Lewis, explained that the hosting of the seminar was quite timely. “The GDF has benefitted from several previous training sessions with ICRC, but this is the first time in the recent past that we are having the Train the Trainers programme being conducted. Commanders are required to have a proper understanding or International Humanitarian Law. But it is also of great importance that they understand how to teach the material to their subordinates. With the conclusion of this seminar, this cohort of officers are now equipped with a deeper understanding to enable them to teach their subordinates.”

Colonel Lewis also indicated that there are going to be more such training seminars, and

possibly, refresher courses too. “The world environment continues to evolve. As such, it becomes necessary for the GDF to remain current with regard to what is transpiring on the world stage, to learn what is needed in terms of its responsibilities in upholding International Humanitarian Law, and to ensure that, across the organisation, the requisite knowledge is properly disseminated. IHL governs military conduct during operations and conflict, and, under IHL, military institutions have a legal obligation regarding how they treat for example, with prisoners of war.”

Colonel Lewis thanked the government of Guyana and the ICRC for their commitment to educating the ranks of the GDF.