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    Chairman of the Joint Services Council, Guyana Defence Force Chief of Staff, Brigadier General Mark Phillips, yesterday presented eight of nine persons recognised by the Joint Services, with Awards for Excellence, at the GDF Conference Room at Base Camp Ayanganna. Receiving awards were, GDF Lance Corporal, Nicholas Richards; Guyana Police Force Corporal, Karel Mars; Guyana Prison Service Superintendent, Nicklon Elliot; Guyana Fire Service Leading Fireman, Don Brandis; Misses Amrita Ramnauth, Julissa Williams and Miriam Gaskin, and, Master Dale De Mendonca. The ninth recipient, Miss. Abigaile Hillman was unavoidably absent from the proceedings, but will receive her award subsequently.


Richards, Mars, Elliot and Brandis were presented with awards, having been recognised as the Rank of The Year within their respective organisations; while Ramnauth, Williams, Gaskin, De Mendonca, and Hilliman (children of members of the Joint Services) gained recognition, as the first ever recipients of the newly instituted Joint Services Award for Academic Excellence.

Congratulating and toasting the student awardees, Brigadier Phillips noted that this was just phase two of their academic development and urged that they press on to higher heights. “We are happy to recognise your success at the CSEC examinations. You have done yourselves and families proud. That includes us, your extended Joint Services family. We shall be following your progress as you move forward. The sky is the limit; seize the opportunities available to you today for you shall always have our support. As children of our servicemen and women, it is fitting that you benefit from your parents service to the nation,” he said.

The Chairman of the Joint Services Council next congratulated the servicemen who received awards, saying how proud the various Services were to have them among their ranks. “You have each had a wonderful year and have worked hard and this award

 recognises that dedication and service. Indeed, this may serve as motivation for other servicemen to emulate you so that they too may gain such recognition. Very often, our ranks could feel as if their efforts go unseen, but this is tangible evidence that this is not so. Stay diligent and true to your calling,” he entreated.

Miss. Ramnauth, a former QC student, gained passes at 13 CSEC subjects and is currently reading for an undergraduate degree in Computer Science at the University of Guyana. The aspiring software engineer is thankful for her award and says that, it will be used to offset current expenses associated with her studies at the university.

Williams, a progeny of the North Ruimveldt Multilateral School, is an aspiring agriculturalist. She secured passes in eight CSEC subjects, and aims to commence studies next year, at the Guyana School of Agriculture, before heading off to UG.

Gaskin, an avid swimmer, an accomplished dancer and member of the National School of Dance and the Glaston Ballet School, secured distinctions in four CSEC subjects while in fourth form. She is now a fifth-former at QC, where she plans on writing another 12 subjects and is confident of gaining another Award for Excellence next year.

De Mendonca, earned passes in 10 CSEC subjects and has returned to Bishops High School where he intends to complete studies for CAPE. This young man has his sights set on becoming a cardiovascular surgeon. An avid cricketer, he now plays cricket for the GDF, after having played previously for the Malteenoes Cricket Club. He aims to gain selection to the West Indies side in the future.

Brigadier Phillips indicated that, the Joint Services Awardswill continue to be presented annually. All Officers and Ranks of the Joint Services congratulate the awardees.