Government pursuing measures to ensure security of society
-- President Jagdeo
Guyana Chronicle
June 2, 2002

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PRESIDENT Bharrat Jagdeo, responding to the recent rise in criminal activities, last night said his Government is pursuing measures to ensure the security of civilians, Policemen and the entire society.

At a news conference at State House in New Amsterdam at the end of a two-day Cabinet outreach in Region Six (East Berbice/Corentyne), he said he sees the criminal situation in the country as purely criminal, and not racial or political.

At community meetings he held in the region, Mr. Jagdeo said there is a definite connection between the recent influx of deportees here, from especially the United States, and recent criminal activities.

He also again charged that certain elements of the main Opposition People's National Congress/Reform have connections to the criminals.

He criticised human rights organisations and others he described as "gripers" who have accused the Police of "extra-judicial" killing of criminals, but who are now being silent about attacks on Policemen, some of whom have been killed, and the robbing and murder of innocent Guyanese.

Mr. Jagdeo told Region Six residents that his Government is doing everything possible to counter the situation and said citizens in individual communities should get more involved in crime fighting.

He reiterated that the Army is assisting the Police Force in joint operations to get the bandits who have been on a rampage since five dangerous criminals escaped from the

Georgetown Prison on February 23 last.

There has been a spate of violent robberies, kidnappings and hijackings since the five fled the jail, killing a young Prison Officer and seriously wounding another.

Bandits yesterday shot and killed a cambio cashier in a daring daylight robbery attack in the city - less than 48 hours after a gang murdered a young rural constable in a brazen gun assault on a Georgetown Police Station.

Ramnauth Persaud, 44, called `Jack', cashier at the Commerce House Cambio on Regent Street, Georgetown, was killed when gunmen struck at the business place at around 09:00 hrs yesterday.

The owner was critically wounded, and a City Constable and a guard at the cambio were also wounded as the gang escaped with millions of dollars, shooting at the City Hall compound across the street.