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Wednesday 17 July 2019
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Fire Dillon, hire full-time police commissioner

Roget demands

President General of the OWTU Ancel Roget.
President General of the OWTU Ancel Roget. PHOTO BY ANIL RAMPERSAD

HOURS after acting Commissioner of Police (CoP) Stephen Williams was rejected for the substantive post, president general of the Oilfield Workers Trade Union (OWTU) Ancel Roget called on government to appoint a police commissioner now.

“Appoint a Commissioner of Police and clean up the police service. Give further resources to the police to increase the all-time low detection rate. And for heaven’s sake, remove this failed Minister of National Security," Roget said as he addressed the union's 79th annual conference of delegates at Paramount Building on Friday evening.

Roget said when Rowley was in Opposition, he had all the plans to solve crime. “Now, the yearly murder rate under this government is nothing short of alarming. It has far surpassed that of the last government. With over 303 murders in seven months, he (Rowley) has clearly failed,” Roget said.

He said while the debate rages over the appointment of a commissioner and new crime plans are revealed, “Our homes and businesses remain unprotected. Clearly no one is feeling safer today under Dr Rowley’s government.

"But I want to say to the supporters and sympathizers of the PNM, who like the United National Congress supporters are now conveniently burying their heads in the sand because their party is now in government, don’t shoot the messenger, because when the gun-toting criminal come for you, your PNM party card cannot save you."

“I have often said that the only reason why any one of us is still alive today is because nobody wants us dead as yet. It is that simple to take a life in TT today.”

He said the country is witnessing regular murders every day, more brazen and brutal murders than the day before. He observed some communities have imposed their own curfews.

"Citizens can no longer enjoy the freedom of movement and the enjoyment of their property which is guaranteed under the constitution. Instead we are all imprisoned by burglar proofing, razor wire fences, security cameras and ferocious guard dogs. We are imprisoned while the criminals are roaming free."

"Whilst Dr Rowley criticized the last government for the cancellation of the OPVs resulting in porous borders, they have failed to protect our borders. Thus far this government has simply failed on the issue of crime.

" The number one priority for any government is to provide safety and security for all of its citizens, but today no citizen of this country is spared from the ruthless bullet of any gun-toting criminal," Roget said.

Of the National Crime Prevention Programme launched on Thursday, Roget had this to day: "This evening I want to tell Dr Rowley and his Minister of National Insecurity, no cosmetic crime plan will succeed in addressing the runaway crime situation unless you protect the country’s borders, get the guns off the street, install adequate security apparatus, implement comprehensive prison reform and address the collapsed judicial system."

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