Minister with responsibility for Home Affairs, Robeson Benn, has recommended that Guyanese only travel to the West Coast of Berbice for emergency and essential reasons. This announcement comes even as the protest situation in that section of the country intensifies over the slaying of Isaiah and Joel Henry.
“Only emergency and essential travel is recommended and that with the support of the police,” Minister Benn said in a statement.
“The father of the murdered youths,” he added, “has repeatedly said that he will not support attacks on people of other races, amongst whom he has blood relations and friends, but is requiring justice at the hand of the authorities.”
He laid blame on former President David Granger and A Partnership For National Unity + Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) and Opposition leader, Joseph Harmon, stating that the duo “descended on the communities and in their statements and rhetoric created, an atmosphere engendering unfounded suspicions leading to racial polarization and attacks.”
“Further loss of life, injuries and property loss,” he said, “are being experienced.”
This escalation in violence, Minister Benn said, rests squarely at the doors of Granger and Harmon, adding that the two are “known political agitators.”
Continuing, Minister Benn said, “The emergence of these political vultures and associated criminal opportunists has led to a deteriorating spiral in safety and security in the area.”
Both Granger and Harmon, he said, bear the prime responsibility for the escalation in violence, injuries and death.
APNU+AFC later in a statement laid blame on Minister Benn, saying since he assumed office; the police force has been weaponized to target innocent citizens.
“The police force, under Benn’s watch,” the party said, “has indiscriminately shot at innocent protesters in select villages. Benn has not issued a single word of condemnation nor has he lifted a finger to address these clear constitutional breaches but he irrationally jumps to apportion blame for the deterioration of the society.”
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