Gov’t playing blame game on crime -AFC’s Patterson

Instead of taking measures to curb the upsurge in criminal activity, especially gun crimes, the government has opted to blame the opposition parties, according to AFC General Secretary David Patterson.

But even as Patterson yesterday called for the government to take domestic security more seriously, he re-stated the party’s lack of confidence in Home Affairs Minister Clement Rohee getting the job done.

Both the AFC and main opposition APNU have recently come under fire by government, which has accused them of assisting the proliferation of crime. This, the government argues, was made clear when the parties refused to support the passage of the Firearms Bill tabled in the National Assembly earlier this year.

David Patterson
David Patterson

The opposition parties opposed the bill because it was brought by Rohee, against whom they passed a no-confidence vote last year.

The AFC has no reason to believe that crime will be addressed while Rohee remains in office since it says crime has undoubtedly spiralled under his watch, Patterson told reporters yesterday at the party’s weekly press conference. He also pointed to the government’s rejection of the UK-funded Security Sector Reform Project proposed some years ago.

Despite the excuses and explanations offered by Rohee for the upsurge in crime, Patterson said, as the subject minister “the buck stops with him.”

Reiterating arguments they have made on several occasions, the AFC yesterday maintained that the inefficient managing of Guyana’s domestic security sector by Rohee is responsible for the upsurge in crime, particularly those which involve the use of firearms.

Patterson said that gun crime has increased notably and criminals, many of whom are likely attached to the drug trade, seem to act without fear of being held accountable by the law.

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