Teixeira gets blunt with Police, Berbice victims
by JEUNE BAILEY VAN-KERIC
Emphasising the necessity to reduce
crime, not only ins the 'Ancient County', she admonished members of
the Guyana Police Force to "pull up their boot straps" and
challenged people living in the vicinity where the Tuesday heist took
place to help apprehend criminals.
Her visit followed a brutish attack on the occupants of a house at Betsy Ground, East Canje, in which were seven Canada-based members of the family, all of whom were robbed of cash and jewellery with a total value of millions of Guyana dollars, travel and other documents.
Minister Teixeira said it was difficult for her to understand how criminal agents from Georgetown can travel to Canje and rob the Betsy Ground clan if there is not a network of criminal activity.
said the community needs to look for criminal elements within and said
people there must develop a sense of security consciousness.
In order to improve policing, the minister suggested to Police Divisional Commander, Assistant Commissioner Clinton Conway that some of the 400-odd rural constables (RCs) be added to the regular staff to work mainly on day shifts while seasoned cops man the night shifts.
At meetings with Conway and members of Canje Community Policing Group, Teixeira expressed concern over the increase in criminal activity in the community which is known for its drug trafficking.
She told a gathering at the Goed Banana Land, East Canje office of Canefield/Enterprise NDC, that the "non-responsiveness" of the Police needs to be addressed urgently.
"Managerial issues and manpower
must be improved," Teixeira insisted, saying that Reliance Police
Station, which oversees the whole of East Canje, has to be upgraded.
said Administrator of CPGs, Assistant Commissioner Marvin Glasgow will
be there shortly to assist in strengthening the capability of the
to the victims at their Betsy Ground house, where robbers brutalised
some before robbing them of Cdn$40,000, diamonds valued Cdn$3,500,
G$600,000, seven Canadian passports, United States green cards and
other documents, Teixeira assured that disciplinary action will follow
an investigation under way to ascertain the reason for slow Police
response to the crime.
said Deputy Commissioner Mohamed Jameer, in charge of the Office of
Professional Responsibility at Police Headquarters, Eve Leary,
Georgetown, is also to find out why cops allegedly retreated from the
vicinity of the attack.
while confirming that four suspects have since been arrested, posited
that persons within the attacked household or in the community must
have leaked information to the bandits, because the building does not
appear to belong to a rich person, just one who is living comfortably.
One of the Canadian citizens, Gopie Singh declared that the Guyana Police Force is a disgrace to this country but Teixeira, although acknowledging there is need for improvement, pointed out only 130 persons apply to become cops every year.
However, those who suffered in the robbery and their neighbours, apparently dissatisfied with Teixeira's words of comfort, persisted in making a series of derogatory remarks about the Police and the minister rebuked them, saying they should address the gun runners in their community.
"...that is where your anger must
show... you should not protect them, expose them so the Police could
deal with them...those that traffic the guns which are being brought
from Suriname for the bandits. You know them but you are not saying
anything," the minister retorted.
said members of the Singh clan had seen three suspicious looking men
walking past their home about 23:30 h on Monday and telephoned
Reliance Police Station, also in Canje.
the phone calls, also to stations at Albion, Corentyne and Central
Police Station, New Amsterdam, remained unanswered after several
attempts to solicit urgent assistance.
around 02:30 h Tuesday, the previously suspected trio broke into and,
accompanied by others, entered the two-flat residence and terrorised
occupants of the lower flat before proceeding upstairs where there
were 22 more persons, among them Parbatie Singh, her four children and
her parents, Gopie and Eunice Singh, all of whom live in Canada but
returned here on May 10 to renovate the premises.
Singh said she was lashed about her body with a gun butt prior to
being forced to hand over Cdn$15,000 cash and seven diamond rings
worth Cdn$3,500 which she acquired through hard work.
woman said the stolen jewels include gold bracelets and trinkets which
were being worn by her children.
father, Gopie Singh was relieved of Cdn$10,000 and her mother, Eunice
Singh said the robbers took Cdn$15,000 and G$600,000 from her.
Singhs said some of the masked gang targeted the visiting adults while
their accomplices kept watch over the yard and on lower flat.
containing the belongings of the recently arrived Singhs were also
carted off in the heist.
ranks from Reliance eventually arrived at the scene after the gunmen's
departure at dawn, leaving particularly the children visitors
traumatised, their parents said.
Thursday, May 18, 2006