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…blames, govt, lawmen for WCB violence
Warning that political interference in the operations of the Guyana Police Force could obstruct justice in the case of the murdered teenagers, the Working People’s Alliance (WPA) rejected reports that sought to lay blame at the feet of the victims – Joel and Isaiah Henry and Haresh Singh.
Recent reports have suggested that the families of Joel and Isaiah Henry and Haresh Singh have indicated that their murders were gang related. The Joel and Isaiah’s bodies were discovered on a coconut estate aback of the Cotton Tree Village on the West Coast of Berbice last Sunday. The teenagers were hacked to death, with the pathologist report indicating too that their spines were severed after they were severely chopped about their heads. Singh was murdered on Wednesday in the wake of protest actions for the Henry boys.
But while reports suggest that the murders were gang related, the relatives of Joel and Isaiah Henry have since rejected those reports, through their lawyer – Nigel Hughes.
In a statement today, WPA also rejected attempts to lay blame on the victims and the main opposition – the A Partnership for National Unity + Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC).
“…WPA will not stand idly by, and let the murdered teens be portrayed in the media as responsible for their own killing. Blaming Granger and Harmon for the public revulsion and protest actions against these horrific murders, is one step away from blaming the victims. This vileness must stop,” the political party said.
In demanding justice for the three teenagers as well as Orlando Jonas, who was murdered in Corentyne, the WPA said it has taken note of the conduct of the leadership of the Guyana Police Force, noting that it is reminiscent of the mentality demonstrated in the crisis of 2002. It accused the police of denying the political aspect of the situation while hiding under the pretext of ‘defending law and order and fighting criminals.’
“From our reports the leadership of the Guyana Police Force, is seen as a willing tool of the political directorate and lacks professionalism. If this is the case the expected outcome of the investigations, which is justice, will not be achieved,” WPA said.
Early on in the protest that erupted following the discoveries of the slaughtered teens, the police, in an attempt to clear the main West Coast Berbice corridor, fired rubber bullets at the protestors, but WPA said it is important to note that the protesters were unarmed. This trend, it posited, is one step in the direction of shooting with lethal bullets. “This practice of shooting unarmed citizens reflects the mentality of a resurgent criminal state. The situation has escalated in Berbice and elsewhere in the country largely as a result of the tactics employed by the police and government,” WPA stated.
The party reminded that in its second post-election statement, it had warned that the People’s Progressive Party/Civic’s (PPP/C’s) ascension to Office would have generated overt and covert racial insecurity and animosity of unprecedented intensity.
“The present violence being experienced has its immediate genesis in the viciousness displayed by PPP members and supporters when they rioted in parts of the country to, as they claimed at the time, ‘protect the victory of the March 2020 elections,’” the WPA contended.
PPP/C supporters in Regions Five and Six had violently protested over allegations that the elections were rigged. In the course of those protests, persons — including school children, nurses and policemen — were attacked and injured.
WPA said that the murders were as a result of the election crisis and the post-election environment, which has been marked by the PPPC government policy of settling election or political scores. These crimes, the WPA said must be condemned by all. “WPA adds its voice to those political, cultural, social, civic forces and religious organisations who have strongly condemned the barbaric behaviour demonstrated in these heinous ethnic/political killings and call for the speedy arrest and trial of not only the murderers, but, if established, also the intellectual authors of the crimes,” the party said.