The Team Unity government is reminding citizens it inherited and did not create the mounting crime problem in the Federation.
This position was explained by Ian Liburd, Minister of Public Infrastructure, onTuesday (Aug. 16) while he addressed a gathering of residents at the St. Peter’s Community Center a Government town hall meeting.
According to Mr. Liburd, it was under the Dr. Denzil Douglas-led Labour Administration that the country was branded as “murderous capital” in the world.
Liburd said under the former administration there were “over 200” homicides on record. He added this was a formidable task difficult for the Team Unity Administration to pull down in 20 months.
Since it took office in 2015, the new government has not controlled the problem and another 35 killings have occurred under its watch.
Since the beginning of this year, 23 homicides have occurred along with a number of woundings with intent.
Liburd stated the government has appointed a new Police High Command and said the law enforcement agency along with the Minister of National Security, Prime Minister Dr. Hon. Timothy Harris rolled out a new six point plan.
He challenged citizens to ‘give the security forces your full support. We need to done with it in this country. And whatever it takes to done with it I know the Minister of National Security will ensure that that is done.’
Over the past several months, police have successfully removed illegal weapons and matching rounds from the streets of the Federation. Despite those efforts, violent crime is continuing on both St. Kitts and Nevis.
At a town hall meeting in Sandy Point recently, Prime Minister the Hon.. Timothy Harris was asked whether capital punishment was removed from the books. He indicated the answer was no but said the government prefers the law to run its course. The government has been under heavy criticism in recent months for its inability to reduce and put a handle on the mounting homicides.
Dr. Denzil Douglas, the former Prime Minister and Opposition leader, recently called on the government to hold a national conversation on the crime issue with key stakeholders.
Mr. Douglas told a local news agency, “I called a few weeks ago for there to be a forum among the stakeholders and civil society in particular to discuss this matter of crime with the government providing leadership so we can find solutions to this problem. There has been no response from the government.”