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Crime Letter Intended for Us
Posted: Tuesday, February 1, 2005

By Stephen Kangal

Senator Martin Joseph's pathetic riposte ostensibly directed to the LA Times in retaliation for the publication of an investigative article that exposed Government's inability to deal effectively and responsibly with a T&T runaway crime pandemic was clearly intended exclusively for local propagandistic consumption.

The flood of adverse press editorials/ letters/ comments that it received in the media and in Parliament is clearly indicative of the extent to which a bungling administration is out of sync with local public opinion. The international press is not a part of the clientele base being recruited by the Manning brigade. I pray that our local media houses will not succumb in the face of Government's dispensing of a bloated, unprecedented advertising/ PR largesse reinforced by an expensive cadre of spin-doctors.

I have no doubt that that letter if and when received by the LA Times will be shredded as being unworthy of a reply or publication. To suggest to the LA Times that it should apologise "to the people of T&T" for publishing an accurate snapshot of the crime scenario and give prominence instead to cheap political propaganda is really na´ve of the Minister.

The expanding energy sector, increasing visitor arrivals, foreign investment inflows and cosmetic Police upgrades have not retarded the exponential rise in crime. If anything crime is fuelling an exodus of the business class to safer climes. It may relegate T&T to a depleted entrepreneurial situation that had pauperized Guyana under Forbes Burnham and from which it has not recovered.

Minister Joseph's letter and the subsequent local media full - page National Security cosmetic policy statement are intended to throw dust in our faces. Can Minister Joseph really speak for us the people on any crime-related matter at this juncture in our ineluctable decline to barbarism? The MORI Poll indicates the extent to which the Government is a stranger to us.



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