Criminologist: Kamla's crime plan a pie in the sky

A pie in the sky.

That was the re­ac­tion of crim­i­nol­o­gist Dau­rius Figueira to Op­po­si­tion Leader Kam­la Per­sad-Bisses­sar's short, medi­um and long term crime-fight­ing mea­sures, which she promised to in­sti­tute when the Unit­ed Na­tion­al Con­gress as­sumes of­fice again.

Ad­dress­ing UNC sup­port­ers at the Mon­day Night Fo­rum in Ch­agua­nas, Per­sad-Bisses­sar rolled out her plans, stat­ing that the Gov­ern­ment had been clue­less in bring­ing the mur­der rate down.

She made the state­ment against the back­drop of eight mur­ders in 18 hours be­tween Sun­day and Mon­day, one of whom was famed play­wright Ray­mond Choo Kong.

Among the mea­sures, she promised to ini­ti­ate are- tar­get­ing hot spot, es­tab­lish an in­te­grat­ed tech­nol­o­gy back­bone to en­sure a two-way flow of com­mu­ni­ca­tion be­tween the TTPS and cit­i­zens, use the Uni­ver­si­ty of the West In­dies to train mem­bers of the pro­tec­tive ser­vices, set up a dual pur­pose fa­cil­i­ty for foren­sic sci­ences to de­tect crime, re­move the po­lice from be­ing a com­mand and con­trol war­rior to a part­ner and guardian mind­set, use leg­is­la­tion to wipe out cor­rup­tion in the pro­tec­tive ser­vices, es­tab­lish a spe­cial court to deal with cor­rup­tion in the pub­lic ser­vice, im­ple­ment a spe­cial court to deal with cor­rup­tion in the pub­lic ser­vice and es­tab­lish a spe­cial unit with lo­cal and in­ter­na­tion­al spe­cial in­ves­ti­ga­tors and pros­e­cu­tors to in­ves­ti­gate mem­bers of the pro­tec­tive ser­vices in­volved in cor­rup­tion.

Figueira said yes­ter­day that Per­sad-Bisses­sar's crime plan was noth­ing more than a "pie in the sky... which will not ad­dress crime on the ground."

He said a dan­ger­ous trend was emerg­ing in the coun­try where "you want to blame the po­lice for what is go­ing on...to make them a scape­goat. You can't scape­goat them. You have to con­struc­tive­ly crit­i­cise."

He said the biggest crim­i­nals in the land live among well to do and re­spectable peo­ple, dis­miss­ing the no­tion that pover­ty was one of the cat­a­lyst for crime.

He said Per­sad-Bisses­sar still has to learn the link be­tween crim­i­nal­i­ty and prof­itabil­i­ty.

In 2011, Figueira said Per­sad-Bisses­sar called a State of Emer­gency by tar­get­ing hot spot ar­eas which failed mis­er­ably.

Na­tion­al Se­cu­ri­ty Min­is­ter Stu­art Young de­scribed the UNC's crime plan as "re­gur­gi­tat­ed" ini­tia­tives, stat­ing that a lot of what Per­sad-Bisses­sar un­veiled has al­ready been put in place by the Gov­ern­ment.

- by Shaliza Hassanali

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