SoE needed to help address crime problem says Persad-Bissessar

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SoE needed to help address crime problem says Persad-Bissessar

Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar is calling for the implementation of a State of Emergency in T&T, as a tool to fight the rising crime.

She made the call while speaking at the UNC’s Anti-crime Town Hall Meeting at La Joya Complex, St Joseph, on Monday evening.

Persad-Bissessar said while many condemned her PP government for implementing a state of emergency (SoE) in 2011, it addressed the crime problem at the time.

“I remember one weekend there were 11 murders in one weekend then, and we called all the National Security people together… what do we do? … You have all the laws on the books, you have all the schools, you have all the social grants, the Ministry of Social Development—you had all these others things we’re speaking about and you know what made the difference, the state of emergency we instituted then,” Persad-Bissessar said.

“Yes we got a lot of ‘pong’ for it, but you know what happened? The crime went down. It worked in T&T. So, I ask you to consider that as we go forward for these crime talks and we’ll have further discussions on it.”

Persad-Bissessar added, “It’s not something the Opposition can do but it is something that is really definitely needed at this time if we are to feel safe.

She said the government also needs to find a way to stop the guns from reaching our shores.

The UNC leader said: “The youths who are wielding the guns don’t have the money to buy them and the solutions being sought on the problem must include stemming the inflow of guns.

“You can’t just blame young men and women out there, we need to look further into where they’re getting money for those guns or who is arming them and giving them these guns—that’s a very important point.”

“So, the issue is our very porous borders … I remember, our team (in government) concerned about those very porous borders and how to block those from coming in.”