Young people must speak out against police brutality
Stabroek News
January 12, 2002

Dear Editor,

While life in Guyana continues to be economically stagnating and politically frustrating sections of the Guyana Police Force continue to disregard citizens fundamental rights, enshrined in the 1980 constitution, as they take pride in failing to observe the rule of law. The most glaring example of this is the police proud attitude of being the judge, jury and executioner in almost any or all alleged criminal matters.

While the PNC/R as a responsible political party continues to highlight protest and speak out against extra-judicial killings, many of the other political parties, churches, and civil society remain largely silent as the police continue on their rampage. The most recent and shocking example is the shooting of mini-bus driver, Brian King in the mouth. How much more brutish and heartless could this situation get. The popular excuse of a man pulling a cutlass on police or pelting with coconut etc has by now become a cliché designed to be used as a ready defence by the ranks involved and their superiors. So the reasons for King's death, as indicated by Commissioner of Police, Floyd McDonald at his recent press conference, obviously is not intended to be serious.

With this kind of callous and high-handed attitude of the police towards citizens I think it's about time that all Guyana, particularly the young people, get more involved in not only voicing their opinion against inhumane treatment but in activities aimed at putting an end to this kind of police dominance.

As we mourn the death of King, Anderson and the many other young men killed at the hands of the police, let us try to find practical solutions to the existing situation as we attempt to recapture the spirit of a sober and non-barbaric society.

Yours faithfully,

Lurlene Nestor M.P

National Secretary, GYSM