BASSETERRE, St. Kitts, August 29, 2019 (Press Unit in the Office of the Prime Minister) – The positive and impactful works of the Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris-led Team Unity Government came in for high praise last evening (Wednesday, August 29), particularly as it relates to the drastic decline in homicides and gun-related incidents.
The high words of commendation were offered by independent social and political commentator, Dr. Charles Warner, and dozens of callers into his new interactive radio programme, Perspective, on WINNFM 98.9.
On the issue of crime and violence, Dr. Warner indicated that the historic Peace Initiative which has yielded unprecedented levels of peace and tranquility in the country was only arrived at as a result of the “confidence, trust and belief these young men have in the leadership of Dr. Harris and his Unity Government.”
Dr. Warner said there were signs that many of these at-risk and marginalized individuals wanted a different and more positive lifestyle before the advent of the Team Unity administration but “they could not go to Dr. Douglas [because] there are so many statements that the whole image and profile of Dr. Douglas made him unsuitable as a person to approach in seeking this help.”
Dr. Warner was at the time referencing to public comments and statements made by the former prime minister in which he spoke of his badness and his ability to incite and cause public disruptions.
“It thus shows you very clearly that when we compare the leadership then to what we have now, Dr. Douglas was not the one to approach in this quest for peace and for settlement and for tranquility in this country,” the Perspective host said.
Since February of this year, the Ministry of National Security and an Engagement Team of patriotic citizens have been working closely with gang members who had indicated to the police that they wanted to put an end to the violence—giving birth to what is now called the Peace Initiative.
This resulted in a marked decline in the number of homicides and non-fatal shootings committed in the Federation for the period March 01 to August 26. Gang members further solidified their commitment to the Peace Initiative by surrendering 30 illegal firearms to the police.
The success of this initiative has been reverberating throughout the region and according to a press release from the public relations officer of the Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police, a team of representatives from the offices of the United States Embassy and the British National Crime Agency (NCA) – which are responsible for Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean – and the Royal Barbados Police Force visited the Federation last week to examine the success of the current police initiative to curb gang violence.
The release quoted Senior Manager with the British National Crime Agency, John Bowman, as saying that he has been amazed with the results the police are having in St. Kitts and Nevis.
“When they informed me that they had some success and they had this operation running, I was keen to not only congratulate them on the amazing success that they had, but also to learn and get a deeper understanding as to how exactly the Police Commissioner and the other senior management team [members] managed to deal with this. I have to say that even I was surprised at the level of success that they’ve achieved. It’s outstanding,” said Mr. Bowman, who has 32 years of experience as a police officer.