Carnage in Trinidad and Tobago
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Once again the carnage in Trinidad and Tobago has returned. For the past two weeks, there has been an alarming jump in violent acts resulting in several murders. Reports indicate that one crime lord now has an “army” of over 600 “soldiers” under his command.
Prime Minister Kamla Persad- Bissessar has appealed to Opposition Leader, Dr.Keith Rowley, to join her in the fight against the criminal elements now wreaking havoc within the society. Many Trinidadians living in the Diaspora are seriously considering whether to return to their native land.
Our philosophy is grounded in one Caribbean nation hence we see the rise in crime in Trinidad and Tobago as a rise in crime in the Caribbean. We therefore welcome the decision of the Prime Minster to include the Leader of the Opposition, as her government makes yet another attempt to reduce crime in the society.
For thirty years, Trinidad and Tobago has been caught in the vice of a well organized criminal element and its violence is rooted in the nefarious drug trade. We believe that Trinidad had the resources to combat crime because unlike other Caribbean nations, it was not strapped for cash. The crime boomed while Trinidad was earning considerable revenue from its oil based economy.
In many instances, crime has been aided by politically inspired decisions which extended to the law enforcement agencies. The issue of crime, like most social problems, was reduced to a political blame game and there was no collective political or national leadership. As, is often the case in our region, this political one upmanship allowed crime lords to organize themselves mainly in poor economically deprived areas and these have now evolved into major crime cells that law enforcement agencies are being stretched to contain.
Unless decisive collective leadership is found at the political and law enforcement levels, the blood bath would continue.