Crime Will Destabilize Guyana if Modern Laws and Crime Fighting Measures are not Implemented Soon

Press Release submitted by Caribbean Guyana Institute for Democracy (CGID)

NEW YORK: The Caribbean Guyana Institute for Democracy (CGID) is concerned about the inability of Guyana’s law enforcement authorities to arrest violent crime. Murders, shootings, armed robberies; domestic violence, rape, car-jacking, felonious assaults and other serious crimes are pervasive.  Sections of the population live in fear. Guyanese abroad fear being robbed when visiting Guyana. Pervasive violent crime prompted the US State Department on November 25, 2017, to warn US citizens to “Exercise increased caution in Guyana due to crime. Violent crime, such as armed robbery and murder, is common.  Local police lack the resources to respond effectively to serious criminal incidents.”

The brazen robbery and shooting to death of America Street money-changer, Shawn Nurse (aka “Fabulous”), on the morning of Sunday, February 4, 2018, while doing business in the busy Georgetown commercial district, and other murders, demonstrate that criminals are unafraid to strike at any time. Their bravery is driven by an insufficient deployment of security assets in strategic areas of Guyana.   Daily press reports of overseas visitors or senior citizens, business owners and ordinary citizens being robbed at gunpoint and/or killed are damaging to Guyana’s image. It will also hinder Guyana’s nascent ecotourism industry and deters foreign investment.

Currently, residents in the hinterland/forest communities are being terrorized by the murderous, Venezuelan gang, ‘Sindicato’.  Villagers, gold miners and business owners in Hosororo, White Water and communities in the Amakuru River, in Region One, and Arau, Mango Landing and surrounding Amerindian communities in Region Seven, have detailed ordeals of Venezuelan gang members crossing the border into Guyana unrestricted. They engage in shoot-outs, demand taxes, cash, gold, house hold items and store inventories, with impunity.

The gang has ostensibly slaughtered several Guyanese miners working in border areas in Venezuela. In January, they reportedly beheaded a young Guyanese miner. The killing was photographed, videotaped and allegedly released on social media. To date the Guyana government has not announced an investigation of these murders or warned Guyanese about the dangers of crossing the border. Residents report no increased security or capture of gang members to restore public safety.  The borders remain, open, lawless and dangerous.

In an interview today with veteran Caribbean journalist, Tony Best, CGID President Rickford Burke, said crime fighting measures by the coalition government have been inadequate or ineffective. He added that for a government that is dominated by former security officials, its dismal record on security as well as the lack of accountability for the numerous public safety failures, is astounding and unfortunate. Burke said that “while the Guyanese society is advancing, the nation’s security infrastructure; including laws, assets, resources and the criminal justice system, remained relatively stagnant and antiquated.” He posited that “these are challenging times for Guyana. High levels of crime and the Venezuela border dispute pose significant threats to stability and national security. Simultaneous with these threats to national security is increased world focus on Guyana. Our international profile has been elevated because of imminent oil production. Hence, while the border issue is being addressed at the International Court of Justice (ICJ), the government needs to aggressively tackle crime which has had a destabilizing effect.”

“Apart from recruiting, training and deploying thousands more law enforcement and defense officers, the government also needs to acquire about 1000% additional security resources and assets. The national treasury cannot be the only funding source for such acquisitions. The government has to be able to mobilize resources from the international community and sympathetic countries. Our diplomats around the world should be tasked with this responsibility,” the CGID head said.

He also called for Guyana’s criminal codes to be updated and existing penalties severely toughened to protect the nation from modern crimes and new criminal techniques. “Security services must dramatically increase patrols on the border and coastal waterways; as well as in the city and other population centers throughout the country. These and other measures will give citizens confidence that the government is competent and deserving of their support,” Burke asserted.




CONTACT: Richard Millington, Director of Communications


31 thoughts on “Crime Will Destabilize Guyana if Modern Laws and Crime Fighting Measures are not Implemented Soon

  1. Some will find this press release interesting for many reasons. The BU household also sees the crime situation in Guyana has interesting because it is a country which is being positioned as an investment option for Barbados and others in the Caribbean. We also have to look at a similar situation in Trinidad. These two countries are located relatively close to Barbados and have a long history of immigration/emigration. What happens over there we submit will eventually occur over here.

  2. Odd in barbados they cry out against this new regulation giving police extra authority if they need it , but wish that they had extra police presence in Guyana too clean it up and keep it safe before the crime wave comes here.



  4. Lawson…different level of criminality, Guyana is bigger than UK….with bigger problems yhan most of the other islands, look at its history.

    Population….773,303 (2016)

    With a long and blighted history of racial tension, perpetrated by the east indian population, there has always been state created poverty and violence…because of government corruption.

    The population is supposed to be diverse but the east indians do not act like it is.

    “Demographics. Guyana is a diverse nation, 39.8% of the population is of East Indian origin (see Indo-Guyanese), 30% Black African (see Afro-Guyanese), 19.9% multiracial (almost all part African), 10.5% Amerindian and 0.5% other, mostly Chinese and whites (most notably Dutch people, Portuguese and English).”

  5. And let’s not forget the, some say, “state sponsored” assassination of Dr. Walter Rodney.

    Dont know why some of you are trying to compare Barbados, that has no history of high level criminality…outside of government ministers and those they enable….with countries with long histories of state sponsored social unrest and murders.

  6. WW the writing is on the wall and it is better to be ahead of the curve. are you saying that east indians are more predisposed to commit crimes that west indians. That sounds kind of racist. Next youll be saying that black bajans commit more crimes than white ones.

  7. Lawson…you obviously never lived around east indians, you should spend some time in Trinidad, or even Guyana, instead of running to Barbados every year.

    Dont know why you keep doing so, if it’s so unsafe.

    Call it what you want….go control ya white savages in Canada who still murder Canadian Natives for no reason.

  8. Guyana has always been promoted as the breadbasket of Caricom, how is this even possible in an environment where there is escalating crime real or perceived. In recent years Barbadians are being encouraged to invest in Guyana. Is Guyana a ‘failing’ state its riches not withstanding?

  9. @ David February 10, 2018 at 1:08 AM
    “We also have to look at a similar situation in Trinidad. These two countries are located relatively close to Barbados and have a long history of immigration/emigration. What happens over there we submit will eventually occur over here.”

    Don’t think so. There will be no further ‘eager’ migration to Barbados as took place over the last 25 or so years. Most likely the reverse would occur with a pending exodus from Barbados.

    As the foreign reserves tank nosedives to “Empty” and the refill pump at the tourism petrol station dries up as a result of the negative marketing impact of the South Coast sewerage fiasco, Barbados as a major attraction to other Caribbean nationals would lose its magnetism.

    This coming scenario along with the concomitant fast deterioration of its once stellar management of its physical infrastructure and internationally-recognized social services would make Barbados look like a lady who was once the belle of the region but is fast becoming, albeit ‘prematurely’, a decrepit old hag just because of a deceitful lying preposterous set of corrupt, selfish incompetent vicious people given the authority to maintain her in good economic social and moral standing.

    Bajans are slowly destroying their own country; not ‘foreigners’.

    The failure to manage properly will be the country’s undoing. The South coast sewerage situation is a case in point. The deliberate failure to maintain and to act early to rectify the festering problems associated with such a crucial infrastructural asset is equivalent to allowing potholes to turn into sinkholes on the tarmac of the GAIA.

    • @Miller

      Are you resigned to the fact the DLP will retain the office? Thought you are confident your beautiful loving party will regain government and save the day.

    • And Miller it is interesting you identified Bajans as destroying our once punching above weight little island, oftentimes we forget that as a people, we are the government, and a people get the government it deserves.

  10. And that is the only thing that has destroyed Barbados for the last 10 years, a destructive, corrupt, selfish, obstinate, disrespectful, incompetent government.

    Nothing else.

  11. There has been an upsurge in criminality all over the Caribbean and Gov’ts are at their wits end trying to find solutions. When I speak with fellow Caribbean expats they look at Barbados with envy because of what they see as a comparatively low crime rate compared to other jurisdictions. I remind them that Barbados is changing and we have our share of problems.

    Perhaps the Gov’t is looking across the horizon and trying to preempt a possible scenario where things deteriorate to the situation as currently exists in some other Caribbean territories. I don’t know if the new draconian law is a solution but history has shown us that the tough Jamaican gun Court was an abject failure. The answer to some of these issues lies in the economy and a reduced level of unemployment, there are too many unemployed young people who see no future for themselves and the lure of “easy” money is a great temptation.
    Until Gov’t gets a handle on reducing the unemployment situation we are in for a bumpy ride.

    • @Sargeant

      A reasonable comment, a good place to begin is for ALL Barbadians to acknowledge and commit to collaborating on approaches? Note yesterday the kind of aggression shown by the MoE to the BSTU because they wanted to be part of the discussions how to resolve violence at the Grantley Adams School. Everywhere it is this antagonistic hostile approach as a people.

  12. @ David February 10, 2018 at 8:06 AM

    Maybe the return of the DLP to office -either by hook or crook- is in keeping with Bush Tea’s Pandora-like pronouncements with the burying of the broken trident (the dlp devil lying pitchfork) and the releasing of the demonic spirits haunting the country since the return of the ‘lying, cheating-stealing’ prince of evil to his father who ark in hell.

    Barbados in the past was a net outward migration country. It’s time it returns to that forex earning position. What’s the sense in educating and training your young people for non-existent jobs in the local imaginary job market where the tourism plantation is the only prostituting game in town?

    But the still lingering jingle of ‘Ever so welcome, wait for call’ will soon be echoing in the ears of many Bajans when the forex runs ought and crapaud begins to smoke he pipe.

    Now who would save Barbados from collapse? Certainly not the current destructive lying party?

    Any other party (including ‘SB ‘the extraterrestrial source of the salvation of Barbados) would do in order to bring about a smidgen of confidence in the fighting ability of the now flyweight Barbados to get up off the canvass.

    People are always advised to learn from their mistakes. But the current lot of DLP leaders seem hell-bent on proving the teacher called ‘Experience’ completely wrong.
    To hell with Barbados and Bushie’s devil on the Garrison can take the hindmost.

  13. @ Sargeant February 10, 2018 at 8:43 AM
    “I don’t know if the new draconian law is a solution but history has shown us that the tough Jamaican gun Court was an abject failure. The answer to some of these issues lies in the economy and a reduced level of unemployment, there are too many unemployed young people who see no future for themselves and the lure of “easy” money is a great temptation.
    Until Gov’t gets a handle on reducing the unemployment situation we are in for a bumpy ride.”

    Excellent analysis there, Sarge!

    It’s time you are promoted to ‘Colone’l for identifying the kernel or crux of the escalating crime-ridden situation.

    Since materialism is worshipped by the elite in the society it is expected the materially dispossessed would seek to mimic their social better-offs in order to fulfil their ‘heavenly’ dreams of climbing the social ladder through material acquisitions.

    The illicit drug trade has created an underground market in which a high priest of a plant has generated a false (artificially high) profit for which men would be prepared to die for as a means to material heaven.

    Let’s take the large profits out of the ‘herb’ business and you would see how quickly the blood-sucking players exit the market. Let them go into the ‘legal’ tax-paying alcohol business and see how long they would last peddling alcohol in a rum shop.

    The English-speaking Caribbean is becoming a hotbed for the breeding large numbers of disenchanted young people thereby creating a ready source to recruit to the idealism of radical Islam.

  14. @ David at 8 :06 AM

    I see a fighting spirit at Miller 9:15 AM. But we have to be eternally vigilant. And you are quite right we,Barbadians ,have to take responsibility for our future. In the past we had to fight for it. Nothing has changed in that respect.

  15. @ Theophilius at 10:20 AM

    At least you appreciate that devaluation can lead to carting around a pan cart of monopoly money and yet the country’s social and economic fabric continues to deteriorate.

    A government in which consumers and investors have confidence is key to recovery. That is the real currency.

  16. @ Theophilius Gazerts 256 February 10, 2018 at 10:20 AM

    Theo, you are getting this devaluation thing twisted in a pair of knickers of Bajan colours.
    Nobody is wishing the dreaded ‘disease of Devaluation on Bim.

    If the sweet-living ‘saga-boy’ called ‘sweet-skin Bucky’ Bim does not take immediate stock of its conspicuous consumption lifestyle and earn its way in the world by significantly improving its productivity at all levels of the shaky economic skyscraper of social welfare and state parasitism then the overseas money-lending devil will come a-calling to collect his dues for overstaying the country’s ‘borrowed’ time living in the jail of sweet living.

  17. Bernard Codrington February 10, 2018 at 10:32 AM #

    As one of the few genuinely economically literate contributors to the blog, I often wonder why an economic orthodoxy has taken over public discussion in Barbados that does not deserve to be there by right. I find it rather strange and intellectually stultifying.
    The most pervasive commandment of this dominant belief system is the notion of foreign reserves, which is repeated like a mantra in BU, and in every newspaper and on every political platform in Barbados.
    I have spent the last couple days reading a book (Rethinking Economics) a collection of essays by a group of contrarian academics and journalists, mainly related to the London School of Economics, protesting against the almost obsessive neo-classical orthodoxy that dominates university classrooms in the west. It is refreshing.
    A good example of this dominant academic orthodoxy is the pervasive use of Greg Mankiw’s Principles of Economics, as the standard textbook in most western universities. At £133.21, for a paperback copy, it is a good little earner for Mankiw.
    But is this true to the spirit of economics? You may recall that seven years ago some of Mankiw’s own first-year students at Harvard objected to his teachings. Many of them are now themselves academics, adding to the plurality of the discipline. Do Barbadian academic economists and pubic intellectuals ever challenge received wisdoms?
    I have worked in an environment in which every statement, every belief, every theory was challenged by colleagues. During the 2008 debates, people used to ask me what it was like working at Southwark Bridge, and my reply was that it was like working for a think-tank that published a number of publications, rather than the other way round. In every room, every queue, every ride in the lift, there was a discussion about the global crisis.
    It was absolutely exciting and one felt as if one was learning something new every second of the day. That is what civilised debates do for you and they will serve a wider purpose of educating the general public. Already we get some people on BU mistaking income and wealth, the economy and stock markets…
    Economics is a pluralist discipline, not linear like mathematics, and the more voices you have contributing to the discussion the better. Economics is not social mathematics or so-called econometrics. It is an applied discipline, related to policy and to the improvements in society. There is also a related discipline called the Philosophy of Economics which is for those of us who have an interest in the emergence of ideas (or so-called Schools).
    You will appreciate that futile attempts by some to merge psychology and mathematics and statistics to the purity of economic thought is wide of the mark. Behavioural economics is as bogus as econometrics. We can only show this more clearly in open debate.
    Let us raise our game, avoid the pro-party arguments, and introduce some clarity to the discussions.

  18. @ Hal Austin at 11:18 AM

    I agree with almost all that you have written in this intervention,especially your assertion that economics is an applied science

    Actually BU is a good place to be. It alerts one to the needs of society . And how decisions are made. Everyone’s needs must be addressed. We all have meaningful contributions to make. Life is pluralist’ .(That is an obvious statement , David.)

  19. @ Hal Austin

    We are in General Election mode in Barbados so BU is ventilating all relevant issues in order to educate and inform the household. You should note that all, including political party supporters, express their views. Managing the economy is crucial; without it there is no stable society.

    Yes there is plenty of dogma and little analysis but we are getting there.

  20. @Hal
    “every ride in the lift, there was a discussion about the global crisis”.
    Now I know that you are lying, there is no lift in this world that an fit you, your ego, and a next person 🙂

    Cheap joke, I couldn’t let it pass.

  21. ” Preliminary police investigations revealed that at around 3:30 p.m., Senator Maxine McClean, visited the ATM at University Drive, Black Rock, St Michael, when she was approached by a masked man, who stuck her at the side of her face with his hand, pulled her handbag from her grasp, and the fled the scene.”

  22. @ Bernard
    Hal …I agree with almost all that you have written in this intervention,especially your assertion that economics is an applied science
    Where did he ‘assert’ that?
    Even Hal is not that foolish.

    Anyone who associates ‘economics’ with science has no idea what science really is.

  23. oh oh trouble brewing for the thieves, it was like in canada when one of our senators family was killed by a drunk driver, the thought process was they got one of us so we better do something about it, a full on attack on drinking and driving was was launched in govt new laws were enacted MADD became a household name. Your thieves are in for it now they went after one of the chosen would not be surprised if the lash comes back.

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