Presidential candidate comments on crime
GEORGETOWN – The presidential candidate of the main opposition People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR), David Granger, has said that the crime situation in Guyana “is truly frightening”.
“The public perception is that there is a surge in crime and that perception is derived from the Police Force’s own daily bulletins,” Granger said in a television broadcast on Friday.
“The Force seems to be clueless about formulating a plan to stanch the influx of illegal firearms and about how to identify and counter the mushrooming of numerous amateur gangs.
“It is public knowledge that the Police Force is severely under strength,” Granger said, adding “yet the Administration has done nothing to deal with the Force’s human resource deficiency and to reorganize and reinforce the command and management of the hinterland”.
Granger, who is seeking to win the election likely to be held in August, said the ruling People’s Progressive Party Civic (PPP/C) administration, over the years, “received numerous well-reasoned recommendations from several UK-funded consultancies and local commissions”.
“It rejected the best of them and failed to act decisively against the causes of crime. The PPP/C administration seems content to roll out a number of fake policies which everyone knows simply don’t, won’t and can’t work,” he said.
“After nearly 19 years in office . . . . the PPP/C administration should be well aware of just how bad this country’s public safety record is and what needs to be done about it,” he added.
Granger said a recent report by the Inter-American Development Bank and the annual Business Outlook Survey 2010, published by Ram & McRae, rated the Guyana Police Force and the Ministry of Home Affairs “poorly” in terms of effectiveness in the public sector.
He also quoted a senior official of the Criminal Investigations Department as saying that on average there are about two armed robberies daily in the country.
He said no segment of the society is immune from the crime wave.
“Armed bandits have been robbing private households at will,” he said.
He added: “Small gangs of two or three young men armed often with only one rented pistol among them frequently pounce on Internet cafés, petrol stations, Chinese restaurants, vendors, visitors from overseas and any other vulnerable targets.” (CMC)