WPA warns against torture as ‘new crime fighting apparatus’

The Working People’s Alliance (WPA) has condemned what it alleges is the adoption of torture by the security forces in Guyana as a weapon in their fight against crime.

In a press release yesterday, the WPA said the latest example of the use of this ‘new crime fighting apparatus’ is the case of alleged wanted man David Leander of Buxton who last Friday at the time of his appearance in the Georgetown Magistrate’s Court to answer charges “showed all the signs of having been subjected to serious and vicious physical abuse.”

The release noted that Leander was able-bodied when taken into custody but he had to be dragged into court as he could not even stand on his feet.

Leander was alleged to be wanted by the police for a series of high profile murders, including the murder of the late Minister Satyadeow Sawh and his siblings and a security guard but on his appearance in court last Friday, the release noted, he was charged for the attempted murder of one Randy Joseph and possession of narcotics.

Meanwhile, the WPA is calling on the international community to take note of what is taking place in Guyana and to insist that the Guyana Government observe the UN Convention against the use of torture against citizens.

Moreover, the party also condemned those segments of civil society in Guyana “who applaud the excesses of the security forces and those who are content to remain silent in the face of the grave violations that are being committed against some citizens of this country who are being tried, sentenced and executed on the streets of our towns and villages.”

Citizens and their organizations, the WPA urged, in the interest of common humanity and their own safety must raise their voices now in condemnation of these inhuman and barbarous practices.

Today, these acts are targeted against Buxtonians but who will be the next targets? the WPA asked.

And the party reiterated its position of zero tolerance for the use of violence in any form and called on the police to carry out their investigations in a manner that does not violate the international standards and codes to which Guyana is a signatory.

The society would have entered a dangerous zone when the security forces feel free to resort to torture and excessive force, the WPA asserted.

It also pointed out that “citizens must come to understand that the physical security of everyone is in jeopardy in such a zone where torture, murder and mayhem are the order of the day,” adding that the horrors in Pakistan, Myanmar and Zimbabwe, along with Iraq and Afghanistan should be informative.

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