By Lesroy W. Williams Observer Reporter
” (Frigate Bay, St. Kitts) – Given the upsurge in crime in the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis and its threat to sustainable economic development, the President of the St. Kitts and Nevis Chamber of Industry and Commerce, Mr. Mark Wilkin, made a passionate plea for the Government to be more pro-active in its fight against the crime. Mr. Wilkin’s remarks were made at the National Consultation on the Economy held at the St. Kitts Marriot Resort on August 14. The theme of the symposium was “External Shocks and Changes in the International Environment – Our Analysis and Response.” With private sector representatives, government officials, senior civil servants and economic stakeholders in attendance, Mr. Wilkin said the high per capita crime rate found in St. Kitts and Nevis will turn investors away and cripple the economy. “Crime is no friend to any country, let alone one with a developing economy dependent upon heavy investments in tourism and services,” Mr. Wilkin said. “As an organization, the Chamber has repeatedly issued calls for joint social responses to address crime. We have issued countless news releases condemning criminal activity as it occurs and we have spoken out in the media about the dangers of unchecked criminal activity. We are now at a point where we have had enough and call upon government to commit the requisite resources to enable our law enforcement agencies to do their job to protect and to serve,” Mr. Wilkin said. Mr. Wilkin said that a strong message must be sent that crime is intolerable and that criminals must face the full onslaught of the law. “The private sector is unequivocally intolerant of crime and refuses to accept it as part of the course in modern day St. Kitts and Nevis,” Mr. Wilkin stated. Mr. Wilkin said that everyone has their role to play in crime eradication, Government and citizens, public sector and private sector. “National Security must be a national priority at all times and this must be demonstrated in what is invested in it and in the quality of results that our public expects from our police forces.” Mr. Wilkin said that we cannot afford to give criminals the idea that they are untouchables while they hold citizens and residents in fear.