Guyana
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2 arrested for shooting to death of former Chief Education Officer

As police continue their investigation into the shooting to death of former Chief Education Officer, 53-year-old Olato Sam, police sources have confirmed that two persons were arrested and are being interrogated in connection with the crime.

Sam was shot and killed by a stray bullet in the wee hours of Friday at the Plaisance Railway Embankment, East Coast Demerara (ECD).

Inews was told the two men in custody were involved in an argument which quickly escalated into a fight during which one of them whipped out a gun and discharged two rounds.

Sam’s body being transported to the mortuary

The two men were reportedly on the opposite side of the Plaisance Public Road while Sam was with friends liming.  At the time of the arrest, one of the men had a gun in his possession.

However, whilst there, two loud explosions were heard after which Sam collapsed holding his chest.

It was them his friends realized that he was shot and without hesitation, he was rushed to the Georgetown Public Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Following the news of Sam’s death, the Ministry of Education has expressed its sadness at the passing of Dr. Sam who up to the time of his passing served as an Education Specialist within the Ministry. He also served as Chief Education Officer from 2011 to 2016.

Subject minister, Priya Manickchand and the staff have extended their sincerest condolences to Dr. Sam’s wife, family, friends, colleagues, and the entire education fraternity.

During his years in the sector, Dr. Sam demonstrated success in programme management while keeping abreast of educational innovations. He was a superb team player and motivator who used a developmental approach to enhancing educational outcomes.

During his tenure as CEO, Dr. Sam provided leadership to the professional arm of the Ministry and devised education policies in collaboration with the Minister of Education, Education Officers and other stakeholders.

He offered technical advice for the efficient implementation of educational policy at all learning institutions covered by the Ministry of Education and represented the Ministry’s interests in several regional and global fora.

Dr. Sam also lectured at the University of Guyana in the Masters in Education and Bachelors in Education programmes.

He has served as Chairman of the Guyana School of Agriculture; Commissioner on the Teaching Service Commission, Guyana; a member of the Caribbean Examinations Council’s Final Awards Committee; Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Cyril Potter College of Education; member of the CARICOM Taskforce on Teacher Education and Training and as a member of the CARICOM Task Force on the Establishment of Teaching Councils.

As Education Specialist Dr. Sam has worked on several initiatives of the Ministry of Education. Most recently, he was working on preparing a plan to address violence in schools.