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Nov 7, 2018

What About Establishing the Crime Control Council?

Kevin Arthurs

The attorney says that the department and the legislative arm of government have adequate time to consider other mechanisms before invoking a state of emergency. The establishment of the Crime Control Council, Arthurs says, would provide for similar provisions under the Crime Control and Criminal Justice Act.

 

Kevin Arthurs, Vice President, Human Rights Commission of Belize

“We have a well documented record of quite a few of the mechanisms so even if we move pass and say for argument’s sake that it is the right mechanism to deal with the issue, then on the last occasion, we had issues of how it was implemented, the difficulties with the publishing of the gazette, the time frames for the readings of the rights, the forms of the charges that were read to these persons, the very abrupt nature in which it was done; the failure to establish the tribunal which should have been established to review. All of these things are still there and I have not seen, even though it has been a very short time that we had the end of the last state of emergency, during that time, there has been a quiet in the preparatory stages. One of the good things and the good news about what was said on Monday by the top brass of the police force is that they are considering it; so they are doing their preparations now. And as we said on the last occasion, the primary reason why they had gone all the way to the extreme of the constitution was because the Crime Control Council had not been in place. There is more than enough time, if it is that they will take some sort of action which is similar to establish a Crime Control Council and to invoke the provisions under the Crime Control and Criminal Justice Act. You can have the same thing without the negative and the harmful by-product of suspending the rights of the constitution.”

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