UNC senator: 2,198 murders under PNM

Opposition Senator Saddam Hosein  ROGER JACOB
Opposition Senator Saddam Hosein ROGER JACOB

OPPOSITION Senator Saddam Hosein has said more than 2,000 people have been murdered in the four years under the PNM.

He was piloting a private members' motion on Government's failure to deal with the crime situation in the Senate Tuesday.

He said there is a sense of hopelessness in this country and Government has abdicated its responsibility to deal with crime.

"Today as I move this motion I do so for the persons they failed to protect. I do so as the voice of the voiceless. I speak on behalf of the victims of crime. The families of the thousands of citizens who have been brutally murdered."

He then listed the names of a number of victims, including Videsh Subar, the 13-year-old murdered in Malabar in June 2017; Naiee Singh, 31, from Couva, murdered just over a week ago by her estranged husband; Raymond Choo Kong, local theatre icon, found stabbed to death last July; Candy-Ann McIntyre, gunned down in June last year after her son's graduation; and the seven Orange Valley fishermen murdered in July last year in a pirate attack.

He reported that there were 46 murders in January – more murders than days.

He said in the 1,634 days under the PNM, 2,198 people have been brutally murdered and ripped away from their families and loved one.

"And the sad reality that we face today in this country is that by the time I am finished piloting this motion, the murder toll will in fact go up."

He said that every citizen is either a victim of crime or knows someone who has been a victim. He added that the statistics show that crime gets worse whenever the PNM is power.

Hosein said in 2015 the PNM sold the population dreams in its manifesto that the party had the solution to every problem, but it was "cheap talk on wasted paper." He listed a number of failed initiatives by the PNM: a commissioner of police was appointed, but no deputies and one man is doing the job of four; dismantled community comfort patrols; Government failed to renegotiate the CCTV cameras contract since it expired in June 2017; no promised police management agency, joint border or police inspectorate; high number of youth offenders; failure to expand the municipal police service to 100 in each district; no legislation to strengthen the Police Complaints Authority; the government reneged on promise to have the Joint Select Committee on national security chaired by an independent senator; and failed to provide the Judiciary with adequate supplies.

He said the PNM came up with a ten-point crime plan, "But I want to give them zero."

Hosein also compared the murder rates in the UNC's first four years to the PNM's first four years, saying there were more than 100 more murders a year under the PNM, with the biggest difference being 135 when 2014 (403) was compared to 2019 (538).

He said the Government was in denial there was a crime crisis and noted the Chamber of Industry and Commerce had said there was such a crisis and called on the National Security Minister to "get to work." Hosein added because of crime businessmen were migrating, tourist arrivals were dropping and tourists were being attacked and murdered. He referred to Japanese pan player Asami Nagakiya, who was murdered in February 2016.

"This is what the PNM Government has reduced us to."

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"UNC senator: 2,198 murders under PNM"

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