UNC candidate for St Joseph Ahloy Hunt has fired back at Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi accusing the Government of failing to enact an effective strategy to fight crime.
On Friday, Al-Rawi accused Hunt of perpetuating “madmanism” after he promised to give members of the military powers of arrest to assist the police in the fight against crime if the UNC and Hunt are elected.
According to a media release on Monday, Hunt defended his stance to give the military powers to arrest by quoting international crime statistics which he said reflected the urgent need for a more robust approach to crime-fighting.
“As of July 23, 2020, the murder toll jumped to a high of 266. In a three-month time span 107 people were murdered in TT. The negligence of the Rowley government in handling crime is visible as a covid19 lockdown could not stop or slow the murder rate. These are factual statistics, the breakdown in national security is evident. That my friend is ‘madmanism.’”
“Faris, let me explain that one sentence I made while delivering an eight-point anti-crime plan – ‘We must give our armed forces the powers of arrest to complement the police service.’ A joint patrol can only be truly effective if all parties have the power of arrest. What if the police officer becomes separated from the rest of the party and the soldiers have reasonable cause to arrest? They won’t be able to.”
Responding to Al-Rawi’s assertion that granting the military powers of arrest would be unconstitutional, Hunt contended that any arrest is subject to the supervision of the criminal courts which would prevent against misbehaviour and abuse.
“Let me spell it out for you again – the UNC has an eight-point plan to reduce crime, the PNM government failed to even have a one point plan on crime, and you insult us even more by not even presenting a manifesto with just only a few days before the election.”