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Rowley hits ‘dangerous talk’ in war on crime

By \\\\\ Anna Ramdass anna.ramdass@trinidadexpress.com

Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley has said that declaring war in crime fight was “dangerous talk”.

“You see all this talk about war and fighting and so on, that is just so much talk, in fact it is dangerous talk,” said Rowley.

He was speaking as the specially invited guest at a breakfast meeting hosted by the Chaguanas Chamber of Industry and Commerce (CCIC) at Signature Hall, Longdenville, on Thursday.

CCIC president Richie Sookhai expressed concern about the increasing number of murders in the country and the unresolved assassination of prominent senior counsel Dana Seetahal.

He questioned whatever happened to the crime talks between the Government and the Opposition and called for a re-examination of the death penalty.

Rowley, clearly referring to National Security Minister Gary Griffith’s statements that there is a war against the criminals elements, said the police have to do their jobs.

“The sensible response will always have to be policing is the response to law-breaking in Trinidad and Tobago, not war,” he said.

He said further that attempts to shoot all persons who police suspect are criminals will only serve to create distrust in communities against the police.

Rowley said the Opposition had presented a ten-point plan to the Government and was always fully prepared to cooperate.

He said in that plan was the recommendation to appoint a permanent Commissioner of Police (CoP) and scrap the cumbersome process that is currently used to make the appointment 

On Sookhai’s call for the death penalty, Rowley said that the problem is not the death penalty but the low crime detection rate.

The death penalty, he said, was the law of the land.

He said if the Opposition had supported the Government’s Hanging Bill, no person would have been hanged in this country.

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