By Kurt Campbell
[www.inewsguyana.com] – At least one Opposition Political Party is not taking lightly the recent statements by the Guyana Government which in effect sought to blame the political opposition for the current escalation in crime.
As a matter of fact, Former Police Commissioner Winston Felix is of the view that the 2002 jail break, which occurred under the PPP/C administration, is the reason for the escalation in criminal activities to this day.
The ruling Peoples Progressive Party (PPP) in a statement on Monday (September 16) rejected initial statements by the opposition which blamed the government for the current crime situation and went further to create a link between the escalation in crime and the opposition’s non-support for the Firearms Amendment bill.
In response to this, A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) maintained that the incumbent PPP/C which has been in office for over 20 years should take responsibility for the current crime situation and “stop blaming the opposition for everything.”
Felix, who is also an APNU Parliamentarian opined that “no one amendment can deal with the issue of curbing crime… Or bring a level of stability that is needed to correct the situation.”
He told iNews today during an interview that these amendments only increase the penalties for crimes and questioned how increased penalties can affect the trading of guns.
The former Commissioner of Police, who agreed that penalties must be realistic, stated that it can only deal with persons who are brought to justice through proper investigation.
He said the Government must do more to ensure that the resource of the Guyana Police Force, both human and technical, matches the task at hand.
Felix also chronicled several other increases in criminal activities that have taken place from 1992 to date. However, Government maintains that the opposition has emboldened criminals by their non-support for tougher penalties for trafficking in firearms and the national security plan.
The ruling PPP said any blame for the crime situation is a clear indication of guilt on the opposition’s part.
The Party in a statement said the support for criminals further manifests itself in the fact that it was under the watch of former Commissioner of Police Winston Felix that some of the worst atrocities in Guyana’s history have occurred, including the Lusignan, Bartica, Agricola and Lindo creek massacres.