Extrajudicial Killings by Previous PPP Regime – Search for Justice

Submitted by CARIBBEAN GUYANA INSTITUTE FOR DEMOCRACY (CGID)

BROOKLYN: The New York based Caribbean Guyana Institute for Democracy (CGID) has harshly rebuked Guyana’s APNU+AFC coalition government for failing to investigate hundreds of extrajudicial killings and political assassinations, which took place in Guyana between 2001 and 2015. The organization is calling on Caricom Heads of government, the United Nations and US lawmakers to intervene to ensure that a mechanism is established to investigate this dark period of Guyana’s history.

The killings occurred under the coalition government’s predecessor People’s Progressive Party (PPP) regime, led by then President Bharrat Jagdeo. Jagdeo is now the country’s opposition leader. Transparency International had ranked Jagdeo’s administration as one of the most corrupt in the world. It is alleged that during Jagdeo’s regime, over 400 mainly Afro Guyanese men were systematically shot and killed by an alleged PPP affiliated gang known as the “Phantom” death squad. “The Phantom” was a murder for hire gang. CGID has insisted that these killings constitute “genocide” under international law. No one was ever held accountable.

The APNU+AFC coalition, led by retired Guyana Defense Force Brigadier David Granger, won the 2015 general elections. It made the extrajudicial killings a central part of its general election campaign platform, and had promised an investigation and justice. Although Granger has been President for three years, an investigation has not materialized.

In a letter to Caricom Chairman, Prime Minister of Jamaica, Andrew Holness, and other regional leaders, CGID President Rickford Burke fiercely criticized the Granger administration’s inaction. The missive was also dispatched to UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Members of the United States Congressional Black Caucasus.

In a blistering statement Wednesday, CGID disclosed that letters to government officials and numerous public pleas for an investigation went completely unanswered. The institute accused the government of governing with “intransigence and audacious arrogance, as well as abandoning its campaign promises and electoral mandate.” It contended that “Sadly, there is a pervasive view among Guyanese that the coalition government has stopped governing in the interest of the people who elected it. It also questioned if the coalition is protecting an interest that is inimical to the wider Guyanese society.

The Phantom gang was allegedly headed by US convicted drug kingpin, Roger Khan. An alleged financier of the PPP, Khan allegedly reported to then PPP Minister of national security, Ronald Gajraj. Leaked telephone records revealed that Khan’s mobile telephone number was in constant communication with Gajraj’s telephone numbers; particularly before and after most killings. Khan was arrested in 2006 by US federal agents in  Paramaribo, Suriname and brought to the US where he was prosecuted in a New York federal court for exporting and distributing narcotics in the US. He was convicted in 2009 and is currently serving the tail-end of a 14 year sentence in a Florida federal prison. Gajraj was forced to resign after the United State government, under President George W. Bush, condemned his involvement in criminal activities.

Jagdeo’s government granted Khan permission to import military surveillance equipment with triangulation capabilities. The Phantom gang allegedly used the equipment to locate and kill targets by tracking their mobile telephones.  In 2002, officers conducting a joint military/Police sting operation arrested Khan in a vehicle with the equipment, which they confiscated. Subsequently, the Jagdeo administration, allegedly through then head of the Presidential Secretariat, Dr. Roger Luncheon, ordered law enforcement officials  to release Khan and return the equipment. Publicly released US government cables show that then US Ambassador to Guyana, Roland Bullen, had advised Washington that Khan enjoyed the protection of the PPP government through Gajraj and Luncheon.

The Ambassador also notified Washington of meetings with Gajraj’s successor Minister of Home Affairs, Gail Teixeira, from which he conceded that the PPP government was comfortable with Khan because “he was on their side.” A 2006 UN fact finding mission, headed by international human rights lawyer, Gay McDougall, also concluded that Jagdeo’s PPP regime was complicit in the murders.

High profile assassinations included then agriculture minister, Sash Sawh, who became estranged from the PPP, journalist Ronald Waddell and APNU political activist, Courtney Crum Ewing. Crum Ewing was gunned down a few nights before the 2015 general election. Witnesses have identified the perpetrator as a known security guard with affiliation to a former high ranking PPP government official.

CGID informed Caricom leaders that during Roger Khan’s trail in a Federal District Court in the Eastern District of New York, FBI informant, Selwyn Vaughn, testified that after journalist Ronald Waddell was gunned down outside his home, Khan, in his presence, telephoned then PPP minister of Health, Dr. Leslie Ransammy, and informed him that Waddell had been shot and is being taken to the Georgetown Hospital for which Ramsammy had ministerial responsibility. Vaughn testified that Khan instructed Ramsammy to let Waddell die. Waddell was subsequently pronounced dead.  In a July 13, 2009, cable, then Charge d’Affairs at the US Embassy in Georgetown, Karen Williams, advised the US State Department that Ramsammy had strong links to Khan and as a consequence, the Embassy was reviewing its relationship with the Ministry of Health.

The CGID letter said that “In unequivocal terms, there is conclusive evidence implicating or connecting at least five former PPP government officials to the Phantom death squad, which murdered hundreds of Guyanese citizens. Nonetheless, there has been no investigation. These individuals, two of whom are current opposition Members of Parliament, still live in luxury, while the victims” families still mourn and await justice. The institute posited that this state of affairs is abominable and unacceptable.

The lives of these Guyanese citizens matter. We will wage a relentlessly fight for justice. inewsWe will begin to confront coalition government officials in Guyana and abroad, and urge all Guyanese at home and abroad to do the same. We will not rest until there is justice. If needs be, CGID is prepared to take this fight all the way to the 2020 general election,” the CGID statement added.

–END–

43 comments

  • Better look into the Clinton killings.

    Like

  • lol 45 …ya think the clintons have that in them to get a hold of power. Foster and Rich …..can you imagine if cohen or conway’s body showed up with holes in it the media would be nonstop of speculation.

    Like

  • 45govt

    You should keep quiet because the amount of killing George W. Bush did during 9/11, he and Vice President Cheney should being in prison right now …9/11 wasn’t a justification for holding people citizens around the world in secret prisons in disregarding American and international law … so go and find yourself a corner and keep your mouth shut you rightwing extremist …

    Like

  • Get lost Leximoron, your views are a laughing-stock from a pretend Christian cretin. Funny how you hypocrites are OK with the criminals of the Left. You would have doubtless been a Nazi in the 30’s and surely are chump enough to support the Hamas barbarians against the Jews now.
    Back under your stone, reptile.

    Like

  • 45govt

    America has returned to some of its way dirty ways under the Trump leadership … the political divide these days in America is more evident under Trump and this has led to the racial divide which we haven’t seen under Obama …

    listen! Trump isn’t interested in healing this divide because he is more concerned about keeping America Lily white … no one every talks about illegal immigration that floods in from Poland and Russia and many of the other Eastern European countries 45govt…
    but I am cognizant of this fact because I have worked with many of these people who told me how they arrived in this country…

    Like

  • You are cognizant of nothing, you moronic old bigot. Get lost, bother someone down on your level with your illiterate ranting.

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  • Father, you promised no more than I can bear… Lexicon, Lawson and 45govt,,,, Father, take this cup away.

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  • 45govt

    You can’t school me on any subject as it relates to the suffering of the Jewish people during World War II…
    I am well aware of the fact that Jews fleeing Hitler’s Germany to America were refused entry on the orders of racist FDR and they had to returned to Germany to their death all because FDR wanted to part of the War until Pearl Harbor forced his hands … the same racist FDR who refused to acknowledged what Jesse Owens had done at the Berlin Olympics for America…

    Like

  • Even a stopped clock is right twice a day. Lexicon, do yuh ting!

    Like

  • This post is an eye-opener.

    This morning I was thinking of the brutality of MSB in Saudi Arabia. Of the wickedness he perpetrated with the murder of Khasoggi. I was thinking of the corruption and brutality that is is rampant in some countries in Africa and I was telling myself that the Caribbean has corruption but we in the Caribbean lack the willingness to murder.

    It seems as if Death Squads are already in some places.

    Like

  • Theo,

    At least Lexicon’s heart is in the right place.

    Like

  • 45govt

    You are bigot and rightwing extremist … so go elsewhere and spread your racist bull …no one wants to hear about your imbecile president Trump … so be gone like yesterday …

    Like

  • Theo,

    People are people. Haven’t you heard of the Mongoose Gang of Grenada?????? What about the political sponsors of gang violence in Jamaica?

    Like

  • ….don’t forget the TonTon Macoute

    Like

  • Hurrah for Lexicon!

    Like

  • Leximoron, you illiterate clown, you should change your name to Pidgin. I done wid you and your stupidity.

    Like

  • Hurray for Donna ass-lickin’ a cretin! LOL.

    Like

  • Lexicon,

    Ryan Zinke gone! Fill the swamp! Drain off some! (When forced, of course.)

    Like

  • Isn’t it funny how quickly you seem to run out of arguments and resort to cussing? And what’s this preoccupation with the word ass???????????

    Like

  • Donna

    Many years ago a Tribunal was established in Guyanato answer questions regarding the corruption under Forbes Burnhum .
    in Guyana … and many police testified on the orders that were given by Burnhum to assassinate his political opponents … And Dr. Walter Rodney’s assassination was the subject of the Tribunal …

    Like

  • Lexicon,

    True.

    Like

  • True,
    But this is the distant past (30+ years) . I thought we had moved to a higher level.

    Like

  • @ theOG
    I thought we had moved to a higher level.
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    You got your directions inverted….

    Liked by 1 person

  • “I was telling myself that the Caribbean has corruption but we in the Caribbean lack the willingness to murder.”

    …ya need to get out a little more, wuh I could rattle off prices quoted to me if ya have the stomach to want to bump off an annoying …. anyone…lol

    Like

  • “The killings occurred under the coalition government’s predecessor People’s Progressive Party (PPP) regime, led by then President Bharrat Jagdeo. ”

    Now there is a lowlife, public nuisance and a THREAT TO BLACK PEOPLE…I would love to see HAULED UP TO The Hague…an evil, vicious, racist criminal, if ever there was one and they have been millions over the centuries, but this one needs to be REMOVED from around humans….and placed far, far away in some hole…well away from Caribbean people.

    Like

  • Humans WARU??? I remind you of the NYPD’s appellation for the dead drug dealers and other cultural enrichers related to you – NHI.

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  • -45….we are talking about the Caribbean…it is obvious that stupid NEGROID ..Jagdeo…is using the NYPD/US playbook for killing black men because he is trying to run away from being black himself…it is a completely different psychology the NYPD uses, although murder is murder….

    look at Jagdeo and see the black man in him that he cannot hide.

    ..he needs to be REMOVED from the Caribbean…PERMANENTLY..

    He is a definite threat..and should NEVER be returned to power in Guyana..

    Like

  • 45govt

    What are you doing on this blog you rightwing bigoted moron … and who is more imbecilic, moronic and illiterate than Trumpn whom you try you utmost best to defend, but to no avail … be gone like yesterday you ignorant irritant …

    Like

  • 45govt

    And go and teach your boy Trump how to speak because he still speaks at a third grade level …ignorant megalomaniac who gets up at 3 oclock in the morning and text a bundle of jobby …

    Like

  • Temper, temper Leximoron.

    Like

  • 45govt

    You rightwing moronic imbecilic egotistical buffoon… going and study the difference between knowledge

    Like

  • 45govt

    You rightwing moronic imbecilic egotistical buffoon… going and study the difference between knowledge and intelligence …and then come back and talk to me …

    Like

  • Knowledge is something you lack because you are bereft of intelligence Leximoron.

    Like

  • 45govt

    Whlie Trump and those of his liken live high on the hog, Black, White, Asian, Indian and Hispanic poor kids go to bed hungry every night … that is the kind of America those on the Right wants to see … you and those you support with their coporate greed…

    Like

  • 45govt

    Trump, should be jailed for tax evasion and many other things which Cohen will soon bring to light before he leaves the White House in handcuffs and shackles…

    Like

  • 45GOVT

    Your boy Trump acted like John Gotti by calling his personal lawyer a rat … only Sam Giancana and many of the mafioso bosses used the kind vernacular and never a President of the United States … we a have tug in the White House …

    Like

  • RE we a have tug in the White House …

    oh Lord !
    TRUMP IS A BOAT NOW!

    HE CERTAINLY HAS TO BE A TUG TO DEAL WITH THE HYPOCRITES IN THE LEADERSHIP OF THE USA ON BOTH SIDES OF THE HOUSE

    MAY GOD BLESS THE TRUMP THE TUG!

    Like

  • VIDEO: Gov’t falls after APNU+AFC MP Charrandas Persaud votes yes to no confidence motion
    By Staff Editor 1 day ago

    FILE PHOTO: Charrandass Persaud taking the oath in 2015

    A high-stakes gambit by the PPP/C paid off tonight when APNU+AFC MP Charrandas Persaud voted for the opposition motion of no-confidence meaning that fresh general elections will have to be held in three months.

    MORE COVERAGE:

    Gov’t accepts defeat – PM
    Bedlam after APNU+AFC’s Persaud says ‘yes’ to no-confidence motion
    ‘I have a clear conscience’ – Charrandas Persaud
    Jagdeo: No-confidence motion outcome unprecedented
    APNU+AFC supporters tearful after parliament vote but confident of another election win

    Like

  • For those that abhor navel gazing.

    T&T’s official stance cannot be determined this time but has been pro-Maduro because of one word: GAS!
    T&T approached Guyana as billions of barrels of oil were discovered there but Guyana & EXXON will not do business with T&T unless this nation supports Guyana in this battle.
    So, if T&T continues to adopt a pro-Maduro stance and do not speak out against Maduro’s violation of Guyana’s territory then T&T will be – by default – on the side of Maduro, China, Russia.
    You cannot pretend neutrality and utter meaningless words when your every deed and word suggest otherwise. This is not a world of naive simpletons thinking they can fool other nations by pretending you are sitting on the fence while you are playing with some on their side of the fence.
    In this realpolitik world, T&T has to get real about where we stand and how we conduct foreign policy, and the necessary strategies and policies needed to keep us afloat in this perilous era. We will feel the full wrath of the US President, LATAM, and Europe if we continue to pretend to be what we are not, and play naive & simplistic foreign policy & economic games.

    Geopolitical war games near us: MADURO, RUSSIA, CHINA vs US, EXXON, GUYANA
    The Guyana Government is in the process of informing the United Nations and “several Governments” of the threat posed to 70 crew members who were on board a Norwegian seismic vessel that was forced off a project offshore Guyana by a Venezuelan navy vessel
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    The government is investigating reports of an incursion into Guyanese territory by the Venezuelan military. Foreign Affairs Minister Carl Greenidge confirmed to the News Room that he was looking into this “urgent” matter. BREAKING: Reports of Venezuelan incursion next to Exxon operations
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    Venezuelan navy forces ship away from area in giant oil block

    Venezuelan navy forces ship away from area in giant oil block
    Norwegian seismic vesselRamform Tethys has left the area it was working after ordered to do so by aVenezuelan na…

    Venezuelan navy forces ship away from area in giant oil block
    Norwegian seismic vesselRamform Tethys has left the area it was working after ordered to do so by a Venezuelan navy vessel, a spokesman for the company has told the News Room.“The vessel has now stopped seismic acquisition and is now heading East,” said Bard Stenberg, Senior Vice President IR & Corporate Communications said in a statement to the News Room.Venezuelan navy forces ship away from area in giant oil blockhttps://newsroom.gy/2018/12/22/venezuelan-navy-forces-ship-away-from-area-in-giant-oil-block/

    The Guyana Government is in the process of informing the United Nations and “several Governments” of the threat posed to 70 crew members who were on board a Norwegian seismic vessel that was forced off a project offshore Guyana by a Venezuelan navy vessel

    Gov’t protests illegal, aggressive & hostile incursion by Venezuela

    Gov’t protests illegal, aggressive & hostile incursion by Venezuela
    The Guyana Government is in the process of informing the United Nations and “several Governments” of the threat posed to 70 crew members who were on board a Norwegian seismic vessel that was forced off a project offshore Guyana by a Venezuelan navy v

    ExxonMobil says 3-D seismic data acquisition of the western portion of the Stabroek Block which began this month has been put on pause over the safety of its crew.
    Exxon stops seismic operation after Venezuelan incursion

    Exxon stops seismic operation after Venezuelan incursion
    ExxonMobil says 3-D seismic data acquisition of the western portion of the Stabroek Block which began this month has been put on pause over the safety of its crew.News Room has reported the government is investigating reports of an incursion int

    The government is investigating reports of an incursion into Guyanese territory by the Venezuelan military. Foreign Affairs Minister Carl Greenidge confirmed to the News Room that he was looking into this “urgent” matter. BREAKING: Reports of Venezuelan incursion next to Exxon operations

    BREAKING: Reports of Venezuelan incursion next to Exxon operations
    The government is investigating reports of an incursion into Guyanese territory by the Venezuelan military. Foreign Affairs Minister Carl Greenidge confirmed to the News Room that he was looking into this “urgent” matter.News Room understands that th

    “The vessel has now stopped seismic acquisition and is now heading East,” said Bard Stenberg, Senior Vice President IR & Corporate Communications said in a statement to the News Room.
    Venezuelan navy forces ship away from area in giant oil block

    Venezuelan navy forces ship away from area in giant oil block
    Norwegian seismic vesselRamform Tethys has left the area it was working after ordered to do so by aVenezuelan navy vessel, a spokesman for the company has told the News Room.“The vessel has now stopped seismicacquisition and is now heading East,” sai

    Like

  • This is messy shit in Guyana.

    Now that oil money is about to come into Guyana.The Indians and in particular Jagdeo and his PPP want to be in control of that money to spend among his tribe.

    So an indian guy – as part of coalition – in a political party where the majority partner his African dominated – gave his vote for the indian party to return despite nuff pleadings from the Granger party.

    All about de money and supporting your tribe.

    Like

  • @TT. Inniss,

    There is a lesson there for Barbados. I will tell you how it is working in Barbados, which the kind hearted people of Barbados do not want to see: foreigners come to Barbados and infiltrate themselves in to key institutions as civil servants. They then ingratiate themselves with staff by working every day and not taking any time off, making teas and drinks for colleagues, bringing in cake and biscuits for the team and gradually wining the hearts of their colleagues, who then drop their guard. In the meantime, in government offices which are based on paper files, then access these files and change names on them, carefully picking their targets – those living overseas, recently deceased, etc.
    The result, people are robbed of their property. The fact they are still living in the same home and on the same land is deceptive. It is when they die and their heirs go to take possession that the fun starts.
    Fantasy? Nonsense. This is real and takes place in Barbados at present.

    Like

  • I am learning a whole heap about the way the world works. This part of the world is not immune to the chaos that occurs elsewhere. It is a daily fight for survival EVERYWHERE. Guyana is fighting terrible battles without and within. Countries all seem to be divided by tribes. Is it any different from days of yore when there were no real countries but just tribes? Are we fooling ourselves talking about country and nation?

    Like

  • Hal@ 9;19 a.m.

    A word to the wise hopefully is sufficient.

    Like

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