Thursday, March 14, 2013

PNM wants state to play "Dolly House" with crime: Moonilal

Roodal Moonilal on his feet - Express photo
Roodal Moonilal accused the Opposition on Wednesday of "opportunism and expediency" stating that the People's National Movement (PNM) is more interested in political expediency than in fighting crime.

His comments came during debate on the Defence (Amendment) Bill in Parliament.

The Government House Leader criticised the Opposition over its approach to the matter saying the PNM is undermining the government for selfish reasons. 

"They are concerned with collapsing a government,” Moonilal said. “They are not concerned with dealing with crime. Not one new policy measure do they have to deal with crime.”

Moonilal added, "They condemn us when there is a spike in crime. But when we do take action, they also condemn us. They want to get rid of us to destroy the country. When we do nothing they say we are guilty, when we do something, they accuse us of being high- handed...They want us to play dolly-house with crime...

“If they have their way, the Opposition will ensure that we do not deal with crime,” Moonilal said.

Moonilal knocked down arguments by critics of the bill, saying that while there is talk of soldiers being trained to kill there have been no recorded instances of soldiers killing civilians. On the other hand, he noted, there are many cases of police officers who have killed civilians and who been accused of excessive use of force. 

With respect to crime, Moonilal acknowledged the recent increase in murders but noted that statistics from the Police Service show a decrease in serious offences for the period January to February over the same period last year.

He said there was a 22 per cent decrease in robbery, 34 per cent drop in breaking and burglary, 35 per cent drop in fraud offences, 23 per cent fall in general larceny and a 38 per cent drop in narcotic offences.

Moonilal admitted that the crime situation is still unacceptable, especially the murder rate, and said police are now focusing on homicides.

He said the use of soldiers with police is part of a multipronged approach to crime, which includes police training, construction of eight new police stations and providing police with vehicles and equipment.

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Jai & Sero

Jai & Sero

Our family at home in Toronto 2008

Our family at home in Toronto 2008
Amit, Heather, Fuzz, Aj, Jiv, Shiva, Rampa, Sero, Jai