Clear legislative framework needed for community policing - Trotman Stabroek News
June 16, 2002

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The PNC/R says a clear legislative framework for Community Policing Groups (CPG) needs to be set out to regularise the establishment of such units around the country.

PNC/Rís central executive committee member, Raphael Trotman, said on Thursday at a press conference that some communities were getting special treatment by the authorities in facilitating CPGs while others were getting none at all.

He recalled that over a year ago the PNC/R had raised in the National Assembly the issue of the burgeoning CPGs in perceived strongholds of the PPP/Civic.

During this period the Enmore Policing Group was granted permission for the purchase of some 200 shotguns and matching ammunition, he stated.

"The PNC/R is reliably informed that the policing groups in the PPP/C strongholds have been armed to the teeth and are in fact better provisioned than the various police stations placed to serve the communities," he said.

Trotman said his party viewed the strengthening of those groups as the empowering of a PPP/C parallel police force.

He urged the Guyana Police Force to guard its domain and not surrender the job of protecting the citizens.

He said while the PNC/R recognised the need for control and eradication of the crime epidemic, the party would not shirk its responsibility to speak out against wrongs.

Trotman said his party expected that the PPP/C government would introduce legislation to regulate the operations of the CPGs and to simultaneously establish similar crime fighting units in all villages along the East Coast Demerara.

"To reinforce this point, we remind the public of the senseless strangulation of Monica Rodrigues at her home and place of business in Beterverwagting (BV) a few days ago. BV, like other villages along the East Coast, is just as vulnerable to crime as Enterprise and Enmore and is desperately in need of a community policing group," Trotman stated.