Decision to relocate not a whimsical move – President Granger

first_imgPresident David GrangerWalter Roth MuseumPresident David Granger on Monday justified the Government’s decision for the removal of the Walter Roth Museum from its Main Street, Georgetown location to the Guyana National Museum. He insisted that the move was not “whimsical” but was made on the basis of organisational changes in the administration.The museum – which is the oldest museum of anthropology in the English-speaking Caribbean – will be moved to the western wing of the National Museum.President Granger stated that he does not view the removal of the museum from the heritage building as a “problem but as an improvement”. He assured that there will be no damage to the artefacts or documents that are housed in the building.“It is an administrative decision which was made because of organisational changes in Government,” he said, adding that the establishment of the Ministry of Presidency Department of Environment has brought on the need for more space.He stated that there is no need for worry since the new housing arrangement will be up to international standard.“It is not tumbling out. It is an improvement…if it could have been avoided we would have avoided it but we need to deploy staff from the Ministry of Presidency,” he noted, explaining that the merge of the two museums would improve access to the exhibits.He also stated that it is quite likely that he will be working from one of those departments, hinting that the department of protocol might be one of those departments.The Walter Roth MuseumIn an invited comment on the issue, Former Culture Youth and Sport Minister Dr Frank Anthony had stated that the National Museum was already overcrowded with its own artefacts. He said that instead of dismantling the Walter Roth, its heritage should be preserved.“We have to see what this is all about…it is an institution and instead of dismantling it, we have to be preserving it and growing it because it has a very important role to play in Guyana,” he said.Dr Anthony said he does not think the President is aware of the space the National Museum has, since it has been overcrowded with its artefacts: “They cannot display their current holdings because there is a lack of space and to move an entire museum and somehow cram it into the space of the National Museum, I don’t think that is possible.”Dr Anthony added that if it is true that the President wanted all the museums in one place then the Government would have to build another building and he does not believe that they are rebuilding the current museum, and “if they are doing that, where are they getting the budget from because there was no budget voted in 2016 for it.”The Walter Roth Museum was established in 1974 but did not open to the public until 1982. It is located on Main Street, Georgetown. It is famous for its journals in some of the leading universities of the world.However, President Granger assured that there will be no damage to the pieces in the museum but it will be moved to the other building which will meet international standards.Walter Roth museum was founded with the collections of Guyanese Archaeologist, Dr Denis Williams and in 1980, the ethnographic collections of Dr Walter Roth, JJ Quelch and Sir Everardim Thurn were transferred to the museum from the National Museum. The museum’s collections also include subterranean artefacts from all 10 Administrative Regions.last_img

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