More than two hours after opposition political activist Courtney Crum-Ewing was gunned down, the Home Affairs Ministry condemned the killing, called for a thorough probe and urged Guyanese to be wary of politically orchestrated violence.
“Though it is early yet to draw any specific conclusion or motive in connection with the perpetration of this dastardly act, the Ministry of Home Affairs wishes to alert the general public to be vigilant in respect of any act of violence provoked or unprovoked, that might be possibly initiated by those who may have a political agenda,” said the ministry responsible for internal security.
Crum-Ewing was gunned down shortly after 8 PM on Third Street, Diamond, East Bank Demerara. His family’s lawyer, Nigel Hughes, said that at the time his client was shot he was on a loud hailer urging people in his neighbourhood to turn out and vote in the May 11, 2015 general and regional elections. The loud hailer was next to Crum-Ewing’s body.
At 10:52 PM, the Guyana Police Force issued a statement saying that at about 8PM Tuesday, Kwame Crum-Ewing, 40 years, of Golden Grove, East Bank Demerara was walking along the roadway at Third Street, Diamond when a car with four men drove up from which shots were discharged at him, after which the men escaped
The Home Affairs Ministry suggested that there might be a link between his execution and the confirmation of Seelall Persaud as Police Commissioner earlier Tuesday. “The Ministry notes the deep coincidence between the fatal shooting incident and the earlier swearing in of the new Commissioner of Police,” said the ministry.
Condemning in the “strongest possible terms” the shooting death of Crum-Ewing by a person or persons unknown, the Ministry said it has ordered the police to launch a “thorough” probe.
“The Minister of Home Affairs has given orders to the Commissioner of Police to take immediate action with a view to getting to the bottom of this execution-type shooting incident, through the most thorough investigation,” it said in a statement.
The ministry called on anyone who may have knowledge about the circumstances /motive surrounding the shooting death of Courtney Crum Ewing to give their full support to the police in their investigation.
Attorney-at-Law Hughes told Demerara Waves that he and his client would be demanding that an autopsy be done by an independent pathologist and the local police probe be shadowed by a team of international investigators.
The Ministry extended its sympathy to family and relatives of Courtney Crum Ewing and pledged to support the police in their investigations to bring the perpetrator or perpetrators to justice.
Since the surfacing of a recording between Attorney General Anil Nandlall and Kaieteur News reporter, Gildharie in which the goverment official was purported to have suggested that armed persons could attack that newspaper’s office because of content that had been highly critical of the administration, Crum-Ewing had staged an almost daily one-man protest outside the Attorney General’s Chambers on Carmichael Street, Georgetown.