The horrific incident over in New Amsterdam of five armed “kick-down-the-door” (KDTD) bandits invading the home behind a modest shop of a couple and beating them mercilessly to force them to hand over their cash and jewellery didn’t receive banner headlines in the dailies. But it should since the incident is as significant as any of the headlined stories involving oil contracts and the Constitution.
It signals that – with the President’s promise of continuing Burnham’s legacy – the terror inflicted by the KDTD bandits from that era has returned. The modus operandi was the same – striking in the “heat of the night” when most law-abiding folks are asleep. While three bandits entered the home, two remained outside as lookouts.
The ones inside viciously kicked the husband after gun butting him and when the wife protested there was no need for that since they were willing to give up all their valuables, she received several kicks for her pains. They insisted there had to be more cash. A young son had a cutlass held to his neck and the two lookout bandits chased a relative who was returning after working till midnight. She luckily escaped and raised an alarm.
Ever since APNU/AFC got in, the incidence of KDTD banditry has been steadily increasing. A Google search spews out the sickening litany of attacks and violent beatings – “Bandits kick down door at Herstelling”; “Kick-down-the-door bandits execute Berbice domestic”; “Bandits kick down door, terrorise Glasgow family”; “Five armed ‘kick down the door bandits’ rob Sophia couple”….And it goes on and on – just as it started in the late 1970s under Burnham and reached a crescendo in 1985.
The other type of headline that pops up tells the second part of the KDTD syndrome: “Dead bandit was prison officer; gun, ammo, stolen items found in his possession”. During the Burnham days, it was common knowledge that House of Israel thugs were given arms – including those collected after Jonestown – and encouraged to break into homes of PPP supporters and violently terrorise them.
Soon, with PNC complicity, soldiers and Policemen loaned their arms to thugs to join in the new sport of “KDTD banditry”. This was noted for the first time in a Crime Chief release towards the end of 1979. Hoyte did introduce hanging by the end of the 80s and with Balram Ragubir at the head of the Police Force introduced some rough and ready methods and squads that ended the KDTD banditry. Until now.
Not so incidentally, when Granger complains of Government support for killing squads during the post-1997 Troubles, he would know which government started the practice.
The dogs of war have been let loose again.
While we Guyanese think of TT as the land of carnival, calypso and soca…they haven’t escaped the same contradictions gripping our poor mudland. It’s a reminder that even if the PNC allows some of our OIL money to trickle down, nothing much will change unless they change their ways. And one of those “ways” is convincing its supporters – like the PNM in TT – that bullyism and crime are OK, once it’s deployed against political opponents.
But the problem is, the criminals won’t stick to the script and start preying on their ‘own’ and – the Police who’re supposed to be their “kith and kin”. On Monday morning, a TT joint service patrol went into a slum area to arrest a convicted criminal. They ended up killing him – claiming he had a gun while neighbours insisted he was unarmed. Mass protests began and large armed contingents had to be deployed to quell the burnings and blockades.
Will it be a turning point for TT like Shaka Blair was here?
It’s really remarkable how “big” men could make serious claims against Guyanese patriots; be proven wrong but not a word of apology is ever uttered.
Remember when “Nassau” Trotman insisted the US$5 million for GTT shares had been paid to NICIL under the PPP??