Flashback AUGUST 1: Jamaat leader Yasin Abu Bakr surrenders on Maraval Road, Port of Spain, following six days of siege during the 1990 attempted coup which he led.



By Denise Balgobin

Twenty years later, there is going to be a Commission of Enquiry into the July 27, 1990 attempted coup which was led by Imam Yasin Abu Bakr and members of the Jamaat-al-Muslimeen.

The announcement was made by Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar yesterday during at the post-Cabinet press briefing at the Office of the Prime Minister, St Clair.

Persad-Bissessar said she hopes it brings some closure to all those who suffered through it.

"We are approaching the anniversary of the coup and for several years, numerous calls have been made by a large number of citizens for an investigation.

"It is important to have this enquiry so that we can take steps to avoid such a thing ever happening in this country again," she said.

She declined to name the members of the commission, but said during this week the necessary documents would be sent to the President for approval.

She said once the enquiry revealed evidence of wrongdoing, consideration will be given to prosecute those culpable but noted that some offences were statute-barred.

The announcement of the enquiry comes even as the State is moving to auction off several properties owned by Bakr and another senior member of the group Kala Aki Bua.

Admitting she was informed of a threat to her life about this planned property auction, the Prime Minister says she does not fear any backlash from it.

"We are simply following the decisions of the court. We realise from the wording of the threat, it would appear to come from someone who may in some way be associated with the lands.

"I know we inherited a bullet train, and it will take a lot of effort to stop this bullet train, but I stopped being afraid when I took this job. I am not afraid, we will do our duty, we will do what we have to do," she said.

The Prime Minister said the security forces will remain on alert.

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