Dr. Luncheon: Allegations against Minister Gajraj serious
Guyana Chronicle
January 15, 2004

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GINA - HEAD of the Presidential Secretariat and Cabinet Secretary, Dr. Roger Luncheon, said yesterday that allegations made against Home Affairs Minister, Ronald Gajraj, are serious and once brought with proper regard to the Administration, there is no doubt that subsequent steps of an investigative nature would be expected.

The HPS made this and other disclosures in his HPS Press Conference. Dr. Luncheon's disclosure comes in the second week after the disclosure by self-confessed informant, about the existence of a "killing squad" for which he provided information leading to the death of many suspected criminals. George Bacchus brought his allegations to the fore after the fatal shooting of his brother Shafeek Bacchus last week. He believes that his brother was mistakenly killed for him.

The HPS said, "Our concern now is to get a credible account of what allegedly has taken and is taking place in the Security Sector and we have some institutional regard for what is a reasonably credible account".

Dr. Luncheon said what essentially is being disclosed by him is the reluctance by the Administration to respond to what is being said in some sections of the media.

Dr. Luncheon noted what perhaps started out as a mere disclosure to the media, has gone the full gamut of sensationalism and now some feel that the issue has gone from sublime to the ridiculous. He added that must be emphasized, given the seriousness of the allegations and given the effort that would be consumed in trying to conduct a good investigation, there must be sound basis for invoking such an approach.

The Head of the Presidential Secretariat noted that he is not of the view that the allegations made could be anymore serious or any more widespread. He doubted that there is anything much more left to claim. "I don't think some sections of the media have left much for the imagination", Dr. Luncheon disclosed.

The Cabinet Secretary stressed that no Administration, in particular in Guyana, in the context of what has befallen Guyana over the last few years with regard to the media and the way they operate and conduct their business, would use any media report as a fundamental basis for launching investigations into functionaries of the Administration. He added that the expectation of the Administration is that with the volume of the allegations, there must be some effort by those who have made these disclosures to draw to the attention of the Administration various aspects, particularly those that have been touted as the basis for attacks on Government functionaries.

Dr. Luncheon noted that the episodes of picketing exercises staged outside the Ministry of Home Affairs, the parking of a hearse and other events that obtained there are part of the Guyanese culture. He said there should be no surprise or amusement in the actions being taken by protestors.