The Opposition political group, A Partnership for National Unity continues its call for Minister of Home Affairs Clement Rohee to be removed from office. The APNU has been making the call since last year when the National Assembly passed a no confidence motion in the Minister.
Rohee has refused to resign and the President continues to indicate that he has confidence in his Minister of Home Affairs. On, Friday Opposition and APNU Leader, David Granger indicated that the Partnership now intends to begin lobbying civil society groups to call on the Minister to demit office, especially in wake of the rising crime problem in the country.
The Opposition Leader said “we are calling on the Private Sector Commission, we are calling on the Chamber of Commerce and Industry, we are calling on the Guyana Human Rights Association, we are calling on religious organisations to prevail on the President to revoke Mr. Rohee’s appointment”.
He said it is quite clear that after seven years of Rohee holding the security portfolio, the crime situation has worsened and “there needs to be changes at the top”.
Earlier this week, the governing People’s Progressive Party threw blame for the current crime situation at the feet of the Opposition parties, the APNU and the Alliance for Change. The PPP said the Opposition’s non support for pieces of legislation in the National Assembly that intends to address security areas, has embolden criminals and the two opposition parties ought to share the blame.
Mr. Granger on Friday reiterated earlier statements that his party will continue to vote against any piece of legislation taken to the house by the current Minister of Home Affairs.
He said the Government does not appear as though it is serious about effectively tackling the crime situation. The Leader of the Opposition pointed to a number of recommendations and initiatives that are still to be implemented to tackle the crime problem.
“The PPP must bear responsibility for the 10% increase in the number of armed robberies involving the use of firearms and the 6% increase in serious crime at the end of August”, Mr. Granger told the media conference.
The Opposition Leader believes that the rise in crime is as a direct result of “the PPP/C’s failure to carry out the 4.9 Million Pounds Sterling Security Sector Reform Action Plan, the National Drug Strategy Master Plan and the recommendations of the Disciplined Services Commission”.
APNU Member of Parliament and Former Police Commissioner Winston Felix said the Government is not and has not been serious about trying to solve the crime problem. According to Felix, there are serious issues affecting the Guyana Police Force that are not being fully addressed by the Government. He said issues such as the retirement age, proper resources for police officers and training are areas that must be given priority.
The Guyana Police Force has reported that Guyana has recorded over 90 murders for the year so far and gun crimes and violent crimes continue to rise.