After reading Miss Tricia Teekah’s letter in the SN’s edition of 27th September 2008, captioned, “Our leaders are failing to protect us from criminals,” I gathered that a few of her issues raised in the letter have merit, while others are mere perceptions.
There is no doubt that violence in any form, especially that perpetrated against women, must not be tolerated. It was indeed appalling to read the stories of the University of Guyana student that was attacked in Berbice, as well as that of the nurses at Linden.
However, during the course of her letter, Miss Teekah, using familiar propaganda rhetoric, portrays an outlook that our country’s future is gloomy.
In her perceptions, she pointed out issues of escalating unemployment, freedom of expression, migration, and crime, and further stated that our leaders are failing to protect us from criminals.
I’m not aware of any rising unemployment rate in the country, nor have I seen any study or survey done to substantiate her claim.
What she probably missed is that there are types of unemployment, such as seasonal, that would be present in a predominantly agricultural area such as Berbice.
She is very fortunate that, under the People’s Progressive Party’s (PPP) administration, many inalienable rights were restored after 1992.
One important one is which she now enjoys — freedom of expression and the press. Migration and crime are not new to Guyana, or rather any part of the world.
These types of challenges, especially that of crime, continue to engage the urgent attention of the administration as well as the relevant agencies.
There are isolated cases that occur from time to time, but they seldom have any effect on the perceived increase of the crime rate, as portrayed by Miss Teekah.
Each year, billions of dollars are disbursed to these agencies for the purpose of acquisition of arms, ammunition, transportation etc.
Legislation is enacted, training and capacity building takes place, intelligence gathering is maximized, the judiciary continues to be upgraded and improved to deal with current trends of criminal activities, among others.
The Government spends additional sums to train, equip and make mobile the two hundred and eleven-plus community policing groups countrywide, in addition to the neighbourhood police that was establish to augment the ranks of the Guyana Police Force.
However, there are those leaders, elected to Parliament, sitting on the opposite side of the house, that continue to oppose any anti-crime initiative or refuse to lend support to the Government in the zero-tolerance policy on crime.
I would like to assure Miss Teekah that the People’s Progressive Party’s government will continue to protect and safeguard the interests of all Guyanese, whether they voted or did not vote for the PPP.
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