Things could not look poorer for the Guyana Police Force. There is this case winding down that has transformed into the theater of the unreal. It is one bizarre dance of contradictory statements, disappearing evidence, rearranged testimonies, and the continuing tragedy of those who can’t get their stories together.
Truly, proof that tragedy is comedy plus time. Whatever hard-earned gains the police have recorded loses luster, raises doubts.
There is that standing code of any accused being innocent until proven guilty. In the matter before the court, it involves an alleged felony assault against a policeman. In many places such a development is greeted with solidarity and ferocious determination to get to the bottom of the matter quickly, apprehend the perpetrator, and let the law take its course.
In Guyana, however, there appears to be a whole different standard at work, even with something so personal, so institutional, and so intertwined with the heart and soul of police operations, police integrity, and police reputation.
From all reports, it is as if police people on many levels–some public, and with others working behind the scenes–are in a mad scramble to embarrass themselves by twisting themselves into knots to influence and rebalance the scales of justice.
It is as if there is strenuous effort to add another blindfold, and earplugs, for the goddess, Justitia, to dispense justice a certain way; even if this means humiliating all involved in an increasingly troubling public spectacle.
Nobody in the police can say what precisely occurred – case of he said, she said, and none saying anything that makes sense; except to leave a sense that something is afoot, that many questions rage. Nobody is finding the right things to tender –something is missing or tampered with; forces are moving in the bowels of the GPS to arrange a particular outcome.
The only one who appears to be having a grand time in the tortured proceedings has to be counsel. The state’s side is shooting itself in the foot (repeatedly), arguably committing perjuries (many), and making a mockery (serially) of what passes for law and order in this society.
Truth be told, there are these actors, in what amounts to a judicial song and dance cum séance, who all know that they are operating with a marked deck, and circumstances in which one and all are struggling to put the best face on and best foot forward.
The circumstances, though, are neither friendly nor cooperating. For at every turn of events, men put their foot into their mouths, and fall all over themselves to square the circle, and make these not-so-stunning proceedings go away quietly and quickly. Except that they refuse to do so; the genies are a shade unmanageable.
It is a not-so-stunning turn of events, because what is happening in the courts, and as carried by the media, furnishing unchallengeable evidence of the way that things work in this country. In a considerable number of those occasions when certain level of folks breach the law, nothing reaches the public domain.
Matters are negotiated and resolved privately and conclusively utilizing self-serving tracks of law enforcement. Those tracks are not on the healthy side of citizens. It is why the Guyana Police Force has earned a reputation that now sticks stubbornly, disastrously.
The challenge for the police now is to put a clean sheen on things; on the attempted murder of a brother officer no less. It has failed. If on something as grievous as this, the public must ask: what else?
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