Two years ago, a Guyanese exercising his constitutional right of freedom of association and freedom of opinion, while performing duties as a candidate to the poll of the May 11, 2015 General and Regional Elections was injured and has been deemed to suffer permanent deformation. Interestingly, this incident that led to the injury was unprovoked and the mob-behaviour escalated even in the presence of our security forces. I speak specifically of my People’s Progressive Party Civic (PPP/C) colleague Warren Kwame McCoy, a member of the PPP/C List of Candidates and a known public relations personality in Guyana.
Mr McCoy was sitting in a police vehicle when a missile was thrown at him; he suffered extensive injuries to his jaw, lips and eyes. He was hospitalized, and required emergency surgery and a follow-up surgery. Mr McCoy was hospitalized for several days and was incapacitated for several weeks.
A number of questions need to be answered in relation to this matter: Is this now a cold case? Is the Commissioner of Police or any of his designated ranks in possession of a report of this incident and has there been a completed investigation?
Since Mr McCoy was being escorted by a number of ranks of the Guyana Police Force and was placed in a police vehicle to be removed from the mob, did any of those police officers provide statements and if they did who is in possession of these statements? Is the police action or inaction anyway being influenced by the public views of the APNU+AFC government, including a statement in the National Assembly by former Commissioner of Police and now APNU+AFC Member of Parliament Mr Winston Felix, during the debate on Compensation for Victims of Electoral Violence, when he stated, “Mr McCoy is lucky to be alive”? Or is the police action or inaction being influenced by the fact that now senior officials were present at the scene when this incident occurred? Will this act go unpunished?
Mr McCoy was taken to the Woodlands Hospital by the Guyana Police Force. The police made contact with Mr McCoy after the incident and took his statement in late May 2015; the police have never contacted Mr McCoy again. Mr McCoy has submitted medical certificates to the Ministry of the Presidency, his employer, at the time of the incident. The media carried reports of the incident, and pictures of Mr McCoy’s hospitalization were seen in the print and electronic media, and on social media. No one can deny that this incident ever occurred.
Editor, my concern is that two years after, this matter is being treated as if it never occurred. Is it because Mr McCoy is at the receiving end? We know fully well that allegations have been made against this individual in relation to an incident that took place in 2010.
He was charged in 2016 and is before the court. He is now at the receiving end, which took place in public view, witnessed by at least four police officers, yet nothing has been done. Silence is all that is being offered.
I demand justice for Warren Kwame McKoy. He is entitled to it. I do not request a favour.
Bishop Juan A Edghill
PPP/C Member of Parliament