TT, like other countries in the world, “has children who are accused of committing murder.” Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi said this in the Senate yesterday. He was countering Opposition claims that Government had done nothing to protect children, during debate on a motion to approve the Children’s Community Residences (Rehabilitation Centres) Regulations 2018.
After referring to a case in January 2014 where two minors were alleged to have committed murder, Al-Rawi said the United National Congress (UNC) cannot claim, “we are here because of a court decision.” Regulations for children’s rehabilitation centres have been in existence since 2014. Al-Rawi listed a series of decisions taken by the UNC from August 2014 to August 2015, aimed at constructing separate centres for boys and girls in Wallerfield. The UNC also proposed turining St Michael’s Home for Boys and St Jude’s Home for Girls into temporary child rehabilitation centres.
Al-Rawi said the UNC did none of these things. However his predecessor Anand Ramlogan sued Government for all of these actions which the UNC did. “That is the decision of the court that has caused odium,” he declared. Al-Rawi described that action as,”we (UNC) will go and sue ourselves for what we did.” This, he continued, resulted in the payment of “almost $100,000 per month to house one child” at St Michael’s and St Jude’s.
Al-Rawi recalled independent senators in 2012 refused to support regulations for children’s rehabilitation centres, unless child marriages were abolished and, “same sex relationships were sorted out.” With the former achieved, Al-Rawi said, “We are now in court, where the issue of homosexuality or same sex is being treated with, in its judicial context.”