UNC chairman David Lee has accused Government of mere public relations in relation to its purported anti-crime measures.
He said this would not stem the upsurge in crime, especially in certain hot spot areas.
In a statement on Tuesday, Lee said, “As Trinidad and Tobago battles a crime epidemic, the fact is none of the recently tabled pieces of legislation piloted by the Attorney General has been done with the aim of, or even possesses the potency to directly address the brutal acts of violence, murder and daily threats to the lives of our citizens.”
He said this legislation is a public relations gimmick to mislead the population into thinking the Government is addressing the situation.
He added, “All of the arguments put forward by the Government that they have been tabling legislation such as the removal of preliminary inquiries, jury-less trials and creation of a plea bargaining process to protect citizens can be debunked by the simple question ‘After these laws have been brought to Parliament, is our nation safer?’, which will be simply no.”
He pointed out that this country is in a tsunami of crime, never seen before, with no boundaries of geography or demographics.
“What is desired at this point is an all-out attack at crime from the basic, however Government has not displayed the political will, courage or fortitude to implement any direct measure which can allow the citizens comfort and peace of mind.” He added that the Government has failed to eliminate the causes of criminal activity.
“This Government has neglected to deal with social issues which cause crime such as education, poverty eradication and mentoring for at-risk youth, they have failed to implement new training measures for the protective forces, there has been no sign of prison reform as championed before to deal with repeat offenders.
“It is clear that Government is bankrupt for ideas and strategies on how to protect our citizens as demonstrated by the prime minister’s response to identify one measure he had taken to address crime, in February, to which he answered ‘ensured the protective services were paid their emoluments’.”