Opposition leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar feels good about her decision and that of the UNC to vote against the anti-gang legislation.
She said the consciences of both herself and that of the UNC were clear as they had been prepared to support the government’s Anti-Gang Bill, although it would not have brought an end to the runaway crime rate.
At a UNC Monday Night Forum meeting at the Paragon Indoor Sporting Facility, Debe Junction, on Monday night, she said it Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley who killed the bill, despite the best efforts of Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi to build consensus for the bill with the Opposition.
Persad-Bissessar added, “We have a government of spin doctors, led by the biggest spin doctor, spin doctor Keith Rowley. When we put forward a recommendation for a two year sunset clause, the Prime Minister said, ‘I not doing that,’ and then he says, after one in the morning, ‘Put it to the vote.”
“I want to ask the Prime Minister tonight, spin doctor Rowley, why did you vote against the two-year sunset clause, why, if this bill you say is so important, why did you vote against your own bill, why did you sabotage your own bill?
“They want this law so badly. This will solve the crime, this will solve the murders, but what about the other laws on the statute books? Why don’t you prosecute the criminals under these laws, why?
“We have tonnes and tonnes of laws on our statute books, you talking about one anti-gang bill that you could not compromise. There are 90 chapters of laws in Trinidad and Tobago. And if anyone is to blame, I will blame spin doctor Rowley first and foremost.
“I saw an interesting thing in the Parliament, AG Faris, you may not like him, some of you may like him, some of us know he is very loquacious; he talks a lot, but I saw him really try on the day for the vote to try to reach a consensus. But sitting next to him was the bull-headed stubborn, insulting prime minister.
“I go forward with a clear conscience, the Opposition members who voted against it go forward with a clear conscience.”
THE AUDIENCE AT THE UNC MEETING
JEARLEAN JOHN, KAMLA PERSAD-BISSESSAR, AND DR ROODAL MOONILAL