DEX_8416.JPG

BODY REMOVAL: Undertakers remove one of the two security officers from the bullet-riddled Mitsubishi Triton van, in which three security officers were killed on Monday afternoon in the vicinity of Pennywise Super Centre, La Romaine. The guards, from Allied Security Ltd, were ambushed after they collected the day’s sales from Pennywise Super Centre. —Photo: DEXTER PHILIP

 
THE decisive action by the police in Monday’s attack by bandits on a private security vehicle in La Romaine deserves commendation. It is a message to the criminals that the police will meet them frontally, bullet for bullet.

Within recent times, the criminals seemed to be in control because the law favoured their human rights rather than the right for law-abiding citizens to live in peace. It will be reassuring to have criminals on the run from the police once again.

While we know one swallow doesn’t make a summer, National Security Minister Fitzgerald Hinds had been working with acting Commissioner of Police McDonald Jacob to equip the police to do the job physically, as well using technology.

The co-ordination of physical security resources seemed to have worked well on Monday. Within the recent past, we were expecting the police to go out there to confront the criminals with their hands tied behind their backs. Monday’s response may have signalled a gradual untying of their hands.

On the other hand, we will never be able to deal effectively with white-collar crimes if we continue to obfuscate alleged wrongdoings with political slogans.

When fingers are pointed at politicians, especially Opposition politicians, there is always the talk of “political discrimination”, “political witch hunt”, “political victimisation”. Circling the wagons may comfort the political base, but it really does hurt the image of politicians.

When an allegation is made, the correct response will always be “take the evidence to the police”. This is good advice because only the police have the constitutional authority to “investigate” or to lay charges, on the advice of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).
 
Once the matter passes this hurdle, cries of political witch hunt, discrimination or victimisation are irrelevant.

The correct response from politicians when charges are laid should be “let justice take its course”. Because we still subscribe to accused persons having their day in a court of law. At this stage it is the evidence that matters and not any emotional outbursts.

Harry Partap
former UNC MP