Street crime victims not poor, home ministry says

The Home Affairs Ministry says current data shows that poor families are not disproportionately affected by “the security crisis,” as claimed by A Partnership for National Unity (APNU), but rather well-heeled individuals.

The ministry on Thursday released figures in a bid to disqualify APNU’s assertions. “The primary victims of robberies committed in 2013 were young individuals, primarily males, walking in the streets, especially late in the nights and during the early hours of the mornings,” a ministry statement read.

The statement further said that 81 of the 140 persons who fell victim to street crimes in ‘A’ Division last year were young people ages 18-35, and that 91 were males. The ministry also said that of the 122 “street crimes” which occurred in ‘A’ Division last year, 56 occurred between 21:15 hrs and 06:00 hrs.

Essentially the ministry is arguing young males waking the street late at night and early in the morning suffered more crimes than poor families.

The ministry said that because the primary items persons were robbed of last year were smartphones, including the BlackBerry and Samsung Galaxy, they could not be labelled as poor.

The ministry said cell phone theft was associated with 38 of the 122 “street crimes” documented last year. “It is strongly suggestive therefore that such persons’ incomes must have been of such sum so as to at least render them capable of affording the

purchase and upkeep of a smart-cell phone that ranges from $35,000 to $90,000 (BlackBerry), and $90,000 to $135,000 (Samsung Galaxy), the statement said.”

APNU recently lamented the existing crime situation in Guyana and asserted that crime has taken a heavier toll on the poor than any other group in Guyana’s society. APNU noted the 7% increase in reports of robbery under arms; the 16% increase in the number of armed robberies involving the use of firearms and the proliferation of other crimes including piracy, banditry, murders, interpersonal violence, and road fatalities.

These realities have led the coalition to conclude that Guyana is suffering a “security crisis”. However, in addition to refuting claims that the poor are disproportionately affected, the ministry rejected the assertion that Guyana has a security crisis.

In its release the ministry said that such crises exist in Syria, South Sudan, Iraq and Turkey, and that the situation in Guyana “is a far cry from the conditions obtaining in those countries.”

Opposition Leader David Granger, in response to a question on the statement at a press conference yesterday, said that Minister of Home Affairs Clement Rohee seems to be “divorced from reality” with regard to serious crimes in Guyana.

“I don’t know which planet the person who made that statement is living on but I have visited victims of piracy on the Corentyne,” Granger said. “I have spoken with wives who have been battered, [the families of] poor women who have been killed by their spouses and I pointed out that the murder rate in 2013 is similar to that in 2004 during the troubles on the East Coast and most of the victims were poor people.

“I know he speaks about Samsung and BlackBerry but we are talking about serious crimes. We are talking about murders, rapes and armed robberies… I don’t know, he seems to be divorced from reality. I don’t know if we are talking about the same thing, I can’t imagine the bulk of the population would agree with Rohee,” Granger said.


China Railway gets major T&T road project

A sketch of the proposed Curepe Interchange (Trinidad Guardian) China Railway Construction Corporation (CRCC) has been awarded a $221.7 million contract by the National infrastructure Development Company (Nidco) to build the controversial Curepe Interchange, the state company’s chairman Herbert George has confirmed.

Evidence in alleged plot to kill President was unreliable – Police legal advisor

Legal Advisor to the Police, retired Justice of Appeal, Claudette Singh yesterday testified that there was insufficient evidence in the allegation made by Andriff Gillard of an alleged plot to assassinate President David Granger.

By ,

City to vote on parking meters report

Today at 2 pm the 30 councillors of the Georgetown City Council will once again cast a vote on the future of metered parking in the city and several of them have told Stabroek News that they want to be sure their vote accurately represents a mandate from residents.

By ,

Blanhum rejects ‘appalling’ statements by Ramnarine

Crime Chief Wendell Blanhum yesterday made a written request to be recalled before the Commission of Inquiry (CoI) investigating the allegation of a plot to kill the President of Guyana to defend himself against “appalling” statements made by Assistant Commissioner of Police David Ramnarine.

Two men remanded over Rawle Rodrigues murder

Two men were yesterday remanded to prison by a city magistrate after they were charged with the fatal stabbing of Rawle Rodrigues which occurred in January.

Your browser is out-of-date!

Update your browser to view this website correctly.

We built using new technology. This makes our website faster, more feature rich and easier to use for 95% of our readers.
Unfortunately, your browser does not support some of these technologies. Click the button below and choose a modern browser to receive our intended user experience.

Update my browser now