Bajans feeling under siege – warns Opposition

The Opposition Barbados Labour Party (BLP) today called for an immediate crackdown on illegal firearms, while warning that Barbadians were feeling under siege.

Former Attorney General Dale Marshall issued the urgent call in response to last night’s killing of 58-year-old Colleen Beresdean Payne of Lodge Hill, St Michael, who was attacked and shot by two men around 9 p.m. as she attempted to use an Automatic Teller Machine (ATM) at University Drive, Black Rock, St Michael.

Payne’s death brings to 18 the number of murders so far this year, compared to 21 for all of last year.

Warning that action needs to be urgently taken before another innocent life is taken, the Opposition spokesman appealed directly to “Government, and especially the Prime Minister and the Attorney General, to immediately set about prioritizing the fight against illegal firearms on our streets as many of the murders committed involved the use of these weapons.

“Our Parliament does not need another debate on law and order. What Barbados needs is action on the part of the Government. And we need it now, before another innocent life is taken,” Marshall said in a press statement, in which he also reiterated the Opposition’s support for “extraordinary” Government expenditure on tackling crime.

Over the past three weeks alone, there have been five homicides, with Payne’s being the latest in a worrying string of deadly crimes. It has come swiftly on the heels of July 13 murder of 48-year-old Kenrick Adolphus Spooner of #1 Pool land, St John, which occurred at Todds Land, St George.

Police are also investigating the double murder of 80-year-old Vincent Robinson and 49-year-old Tony Singh, which occurred at Prerogative House, St George sometime between July 1 and July 2.

Those killings followed closely on the heels of the June 28 execution-style killing of 44-year-old Jerome Bovell, who was gunned down mercilessly at Goddard’s Road, St Stephens Hill, Black Rock, St Michael.

With every homicide, Marshall warned that Barbadians were being robbed of the peace of mind, safety and the stability they have traditionally enjoyed.

“The fear of crime has now reached crippling proportions, so much so that Barbadians are feeling under siege and, increasingly, feel unable to go about this country to work and play as they choose,” the former Attorney General said.

“Peace and stability are also of significant economic value, since any gains made by any government will quickly be wiped out if we lose our reputation for being a safe place to live and to do business,” he added.

In a separate statement today, the Gender Affairs Committee of the National Union of Public Workers (NUPW) reacted with sadness to the latest murder.

President Makala Beckles-Jordan appealed to Attorney General Adriel Brathwaite to take swift action, while noting that the domestic rate of homicide grew from 6.4 per cent in 1980 to 10.1 per cent in 2010, and continues to grow yearly.

Beckles-Jordan said Barbados had become a tense society where jobs were few, money scarce and crime was on the rise, putting the lives of citizens at risk.

“No one should be fearful to go about their daily lives. More should be done to help curb the high level of violence in this country,” she stressed.

11 Responses to Bajans feeling under siege – warns Opposition

  1. John Everatt July 19, 2017 at 12:32 am

    The violence situation in Barbados is not something that can be turned around in the short term. The weapons are already here and many are already in the hands of criminals. The police are playing wack-a-mole trying to contain the use of these weapons. From what I read in the media you can get just about any kind of weapon that you want here for a price. It is not these petty criminals who buy a gun for $500 that are bringing them in. It has to be people with a lot more money than they have. So in the long term you have to stop these more well connected people. But as I said, the weapons are already in the hands of criminals so wack-a-mole is the only game in town in the short term.

  2. Angus Benn
    Angus Benn July 19, 2017 at 5:26 am

    Politicians is who have Bajan under siege. You ALL make the LAWS of the land. How much people get hang while you were the attorney General.Tell the people when you get in power what you is going to do. We need to hear from you. Some people just want to talk when they are out of office. WOULD CRIMINALS still get BAIL when they kill someone. WOULD you start back HANGING. WOULD you refuse to give a person bail if get caught with a gun. And if found guilty, would you give them the 20 years that your government PUT in place. These are the things I want hear from you. THE WORST AG BARBADOS EVER HAD gone to sleep. He doesn’t have a clue what is going on in this country. When they start to rob and kill the TOURIST he will then wake up. 6 people get killed in the last 6 weeks and no one get caught as yet.The CRIMINALS taking BARBADOS.

  3. Everick July 19, 2017 at 6:04 am

    Angus, nothing will happen until a future Barbados Government gets bold and removes Barbados from All of the different conventions and Treaties that successive governments have ensnared us.

  4. Rawle Spooner
    Rawle Spooner July 19, 2017 at 6:50 am

    Politricking again he was AG and illegal firearms were around will say not as crazy as present but simple think ahead and stop things before they happen improve slow snail pace justice system that’s a start.Also improve security at both air and seaports and I can go on and on,but in typical Bajan political election mode style just play politics and yip yap enough of hot air.

  5. Cheryl Alleyne-Brooks
    Cheryl Alleyne-Brooks July 19, 2017 at 7:08 am

    They need new laws and they have to be active. The whole justice system is a mess. Too many guns in the wrong hands. They didn’t drop out of the sky.

    • Sharon Taylor
      Sharon Taylor July 19, 2017 at 7:20 am

      The ppl that importing and selling guns cheaply don’t think d guns in d wrong hands tho…. They brought them in for d black igrant idiots to kill each other!

  6. Sharon Taylor
    Sharon Taylor July 19, 2017 at 7:14 am

    Who does investigate crime? D police! Not d prime minister or d ag….. When d police beat these nuisances pilly out Front and wunna so causing a hallabaloo! Mek up wunna f#kking minds and let d police do their jobs without wunna running up wunna stink mouths! Gun crimes on d rise because guns are cheaply and easily available ( I wonder why) and because wunna got phones pun cock fa d police but never d criminals, cause d criminals are my friends, your friends, my family, your family….. It only really sinks home when a gun crime personally affects us….

  7. Pat Edwards
    Pat Edwards July 19, 2017 at 7:27 am

    While you are at ir why dont you also speak to the unions that are getting ready to put Bajans under more seige. The innocent workers and businesses that aint got nutten to do with the fight between unions and govt but will have to suffer…isnt that a seige also? Lets deal with all the issues

  8. orlando July 19, 2017 at 8:13 am

    last wek the commish. said that people have to stat coming forward. but ill say to that that people always come forward . but the police want you to be on the front line with no protection. all the police that live in those crime areas dont want to get involve because they still have to live there. you police took an oath to uphold the law .if you cant do that then get another job .

  9. orlando July 19, 2017 at 8:20 am

    just look at it 5 men go to jail for one murder in nelson street . the main culprit is out on bail simple because he can afford 250.000 dollars. and he can afford some bigtime lawyer . he dont work noway. where did that money come from . did anybody investigate or its just money going to the bigheads.

  10. Belfast July 19, 2017 at 10:34 pm

    A-G “Not on my watch!”. This promise is a comfort to thieves and killers.


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