Former Police Commissioner and NTA political leader, Gary Griffith, claims Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley is setting the stage to blame others for the failure of the crime talks.
Prime Minister Rowley wrote back to Opposition Leader Kamla Persad Bissessar on Thursday, telling her the discussions will revolve around 12 pieces of legislation. The PM also said the Opposition should send four Parliamentarians while government will send five ministers.
Griffith, via post on his social media page, said: Prime Minister Keith Rowley’s latest action re the ‘Crime talks’, is disingenuous, and disrespectful.
He said it is meaningless to only have Parliamentarians meeting to discuss bills, since they can already do so in Parliament. That is the main purpose of Parliament.
Griffith said by excluding technical experts, the PM is setting up the talks for failure, since he should be well aware that even when Ministers conduct the affairs of their ministries, they must have experts to help guide them. “To not have them means that it will simply be a discussion of ‘ideas’, which does not treat the runaway crime situation with the urgency and seriousness the public demands.”
He added that by framing the correspondence as SOLELY to discuss bills, the PM exposes why crime is so out of control in the first place.
“He (Rowley) fails to understand that crime fighting goes way beyond discussing bills. For example, the use of the Defence Force, the use of technology, reigniting systems and initiatives that have been shut down, discussing the right of citizens to defend themselves in their homes, and the approval for tools to protect them if the state is unable to do so, must all be discussed.”
“It is highly offensive and more importantly undemocratic for PM Rowley to tell any political party who they could bring to a meeting. The job of the government is to design policies that will then be operationalised by the Protective Services. This is why during the tenure of the People’s Partnership crime fell, and citizens felt safer and secure. And this is a fundamental principle I used during my tenure as CoP to achieve record reductions in crime.”
Griffith maintains that the Prime Minister’s latest actions is a slap in the face to all law-abiding citizens who are presently under siege by criminals.
“It lacks urgency and it lacks the elements to be effective. The Prime Minister needs to stop the political stunts and either give this the required effort, or tell the public that he is not interested in a joint effort in tackling our monumental crime problem.