By Tracey Khan – Drakes
[www.inewsguyana.com] – Home Affairs Minister Clement Rohee has called on members of the Guyana Police Force to respect the human rights of all citizens, particularly those suspected or accused of illegal doings.
Rohee, speaking to a room filled with police ranks last week, stressed that for policing to be effective it must be lawful and humane.
The Home Affairs Minister reminded ranks of their responsibility to both address and protect the rights of persons in custody; noting that penetration of a person’s right in the pursuit of justice can severely damage good police cases.
He recommended that this issue be addressed in all present and future training activities of the Force.
Only recently Chairman of the Police Complaints Authority (PCA, Justice Cecil Kennard weighted in on the matter and called on ranks to execute their mandate in keeping with the laws and not violate the rights of anyone.
The Chairman expressed his alarm at the number of reported human rights breaches that he has been forced to address, involving police ranks, in the last months.
This he said should not continue; recommending that the force urgently take the necessary steps to bring this practice under control and prevent escalation.
The police have been accused of grave human rights violations on a number of occasions including the recent alleged burning of 19 – year-old Junior Thornton, shooting in the mouth of 15 – year – old Alex Griffith and baton sodomy of 23 – year – old Colwyn Harding among others.
In some cases ranks have had criminal charges brought against while some remain under investigation.