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Jul 6, 2011

A P.U.P. government would disband the Gang Suppression Unit

Anthony Sylvestre

After discussing nationalization and the rule of law, the crime wave sweeping the country also came up at the P.U.P. conference this morning. The increasing body count and casualties became a solemn but passionate topic for the party.  Attorney Anthony Sylvester rose to speak about the anti-crime initiatives, particularly preventative detention, which he believes will shred personal rights and freedoms guaranteed by the constitution.  Sylvester did not stop with preventive detention, he also said that if the P.U.P. wins the next general elections, his government would decommission and dismantle the Gang Suppression Unit.

Anthony Sylvestre, P.U.P.

“Seventy-three Belizeans have tragically, brutally and regrettably met their end this year; forty-four of them since the month of April. This is an astounding and frightening murder rate by any standards. Last year’s unprecedented one hundred and twenty-nine murder will be the end of this year be overrun. This of course has a debilitating effect on all of us—the family and friends of the victims, the community in which the crime occurred. We are thirty-four days away from the time when the Prime Minister can go back to the house to pass these two fundamental constitutional amendments and there still has not been any public consultation. Government has still not come to the people and asked them whether they agree to have their right to personal liberty be shredded in such a way that they can be locked up for fifty-two days on a mere suspicion without their family, friends or attorney knowing where they are; without being told why they are being locked up and without an attorney having the possibility of going to court and having them be released. When and if this Prime Minister brings into law the preventative detention program, a P.U.P. government will do away with such a law. The next P.U.P. government will also disband this gang suppression unit that has brought oppression and recession on the citizens and have done nothing to curb or lessen the incidences of crime. .but more importantly, the next P.U.P. government will implement the crime fighting initiatives outlined in our position paper—including but not limited to the increase in the number of police patrols in Belize City; reactivating and adequately resourcing the community policing neighborhood and recognizing the link between the conditions of growing poverty and lessened opportunities on one hand and the surging crime and violence on one hand; implement a comprehensive national plan for generating economic growth.  Mr. Vidal has publically stated that the unit is not answerable to the commissioner of police and so what it does it creates—certainly as a citizen, I think you should be alarmed and terrified that a security force which operates under the auspices of the Belize police department is not answerable directly to commissioner of police, but to a minister of government. That has to raise concerns of all Belizeans and that is one of the primary reasons why we believe it ought to be disbanded.”

After the break, we’ll have more from today’s press conference.

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11 Responses for “A P.U.P. government would disband the Gang Suppression Unit”

  1. reggie says:

    WOW SYLVESTER IT LOOK LIKE YOU ARE LOOKING FOR THE CRIMINAL VOTE.WHY WOULD YOU WANT TO GET RID OF THE G.S.U?I THINK THAT YOU SHOULD GET MORE MAN POWER TO THE UNIT.FOR ALL THE LAW ABBIDING PEOPLE IN BELIZE THIS DON’T SOUND GOOD.BUT FOR POWER ONE WOULD SELL OUT IS FAMILY.I THINK YOU SHOULD READ A LITTLE ABOUT THE POLICE SPECIAL FORCE .IT WAS A UNIT WITH LESS THAN ONE HUNDRED MEN.BUT WAS NOTHING TO PLAY WITH.EVERY TIME THAT UNIT MOVE THINGS CHANGE.ASK THE LEADER OF PUP ABOUT THE RIOT IN O.W.AND OTHER EVENT IN THE COUNTRY AND ALSO THE BORDER PATROL WITH THE BRITISH ARMY.WE TOOK CARE OF THE UPRISING IN ANY PARTY OF THE COUNTRY AND BORDER.NOW WE HAVE THE G.S.U.ALONG WITH THE BDF ON THE STREET AND THE KILLING IS STILL OUT OF CONTROL.LIKE I ONCE MAKE A COMMENT ARM ALL THE POLICE MEN.LET THEM PAY FOR THEIR WEAPON.IF THEY LEFT THEIR JOB IN GOOD STANDING LET THEM KEEP THEIR WEAPON.ALSO THEY CAN STILL BE A MEMBER OF THE FORCE AS A SPECIAL OFFICER.THINK ABOUT WAYS TO PROTECT THE PEOPLE NOT TO GIVE THE CRIMINAL THE UPPER HAND,YOU WILL NOT GET MY VOTE OR ANY OF MY FAMINLY OR FRIENDS VOTE.

  2. rod says:

    all thses are valid points that make much more sense than what this gov. is doing worse pm and gov. in the history of belize and will go down in the anals of history as the worse pm and gov. in the history of belize

  3. Higher Level says:

    Reggie, the criminal vote belongs to Dean Barrow. Ask anyone in the street that. You ever wondered how a unit which is named Gang Suppression Unit has not arrested and charged anyone for being involved with gang activities? This is an offence under our laws.

  4. I Have Awaken says:

    Enough press conferences and promises, time for these want-to-be-in-power lawyers and politicians to walk the walk, put their money where their mouth is. NUFF TALK!!!

  5. Indy says:

    …..
    OK well you are right my Mr Sylvester and now what? What will you put in place of the Gang Unit? What are you recommending to do? So still haven’t impressed me?

  6. Abe says:

    If you go to a bar, good chance of getting into a fight. If you dont go to bars, theres less chance of getting into a fight. If you have any involvement in gang activities or drugs , good chance of being detained(preventative detention). If not involved in any way, why fuss!!!!!!!!!!!! A glove fits the hand people. If you no mess with the bad, you don’t get treated bad! These laws dont affect the innocent. And if they say the person was innocent in the news it doesnt mean he was innocent.

  7. karla says:

    The gang suppression Unit is the best thing we have had in terms of serious attack on criminals. What happens to the rights of the innocent and hardworking belizeans. Seems like mr Sylvester is more interested in their rights. Whoever tries to remove the GSU is a bad political mistake. If you are a law abiding citizen like most of us the GSU is a blessing.. If you have other interests then you feel threatened, plain and simple.. You do nothing wrong you have nothing to fear. This is the only way to help a part of the crime spiraling but an important part for the hard criminals. Now, yes, we aggree that we need to see more arrests from the GSU or else we will think its just a show to the innocent and law abiding citizens that someone is trying to do something and we see not much arrrests. Bravo to the GSU

  8. amanda says:

    Its not the GSU i have a problem with its the preventative detention law they don’t answer to no one lower than a minister? you have no rights? no phone call can’t see a lawyer for 52 days ? anyone thinking the innocent wont be caught in this is completely ignorant . You act as if all police are saints I guarantee you a lot of innocent teens will be missing if this pass. Mere suspecion is too vague to make it right . This is basically saying the GSU can kidnapp you for 52 days lock you up probably do what they want and can get away with it. Absolute power corrupts and this is no different.
    If you want to stop crime in Belize you take the fight to them , to their front door not wait till they strike and then react when the damage is done.

  9. crying for peace says:

    The Gsu is being runned by criminals.

  10. mail man says:

    if you think this will give pup or any p to win votes —- you fool s need to address the people need food , education , housing , medical, sport etc too small a country for bs bs bs =

  11. Rebel says:

    You really believe the GSU is there to fight gangs? Yea right. If so, then why the Prime Minister chose to give employment to 15 high-level gang members instead of turning them on to the GSU. Why give gangs more priority than you and me?

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