A City Constabulary raid in the area under the clock of the Stabroek Market yesterday resulted in a man being arrested after he was found with a quantity of narcotics.
Superintendent Gordon Langevine told Stabroek News that a surprise cordon and search was carried out around 2 pm in the area. During the search, a young man known to persons in the area as “Blackie,” attempted to run but was detained by the constables who discovered several small sachets of marijuana and packets of pills on his person.
He was detained and taken to the Constabulary Headquarters at City Hall. This is the third time in a four-week period that the City Constabulary has found prohibited items in section seven of the Stabroek Market, an area that is commonly called under the canopy or under the clock.
Last week, a rifle was discovered while three weeks ago officers found a quantity of plant materials, suspected to be marijuana, as well as break and enter tools.
These discoveries have led to Chief Constable Andre Foo recommending that the Market and Public Health Committee of the City Council consider ending vending in the area.
Foo said the area is perceived to be a hotspot and according to constabulary intelligence, it is a haven for criminals who are involved in the selling of narcotics and other unsavoury nocturnal activities.
His recommendation was supported by Mayor Patricia Chase-Green, who has urged both the committee and the recently formed National Capital Planning Commission to consider relocating the vendors.
Yesterday, Langevine stressed that the recent searches are part of a comprehensive plan by the constabulary, which intends to rid both the Stabroek and Bourda markets of those selling narcotics.
“Stabroek and Bourda are seen as havens for those selling drugs and we don’t want the market to have that bad name. This is a business place. Stallholders are afraid. These guys come, they lime, they sell, they buy, and they even smoke there. We have a comprehensive plan and we are not backing down. It will be spontaneous; it will be sudden and it will continue, especially coming up to the Christmas period it will be intensified,” he said.
Langevine’s observations about the fear of stallholders has been supported by several with whom Stabroek News spoke.
According to these vendors, they have for years been making complaints to both the Clerk of Markets and the constabulary about the unsavoury elements who have taken over sections of the area without result, so they are not convinced that this vigilance on the part of the constabulary is sincere.
“‘Blackie’ does be here every day and the constable does pass him up and down. Some of them does even lime with him. So I not sure if Langevine really working or pretending to work. It all rather suspicious to me that after all these years we complaining and making representation and it all falling on dry ground that all of a sudden Langevine working,” one vendor stated.