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PPP warns of returning Middle East-trained terrorists; concerned about death penalty

Former Home Affairs Minister, Khemraj Ramjattan.

Former Home Affairs Minister, Clement Rohee.

Former Home Affairs Minister, Clement Rohee Wednesday warned government that Guyana remains vulnerable to the entry of terrorists who had been fighting in the Middle East, but at the same time he urged there be balance with human rights.

“Let us not underestimate with all these foreign fighters and many of them are from Caribbean countries. There is a small possibility for terrorists ,not of home-grown type…of the type that we know that are moving around the world and are seeking climates, political too, to nestle and create the necessary cells as we saw like those who were in Guyana and plotting terrorist activities in the United States,”  Rohee told the National Assembly.

He was at the time contributing to the debate on Anti-Terrorism and Terrorist Related Activities Bill.

Rohee stressed that the PPP-Civic would always support Guyana’s participation in the global anti-terrorism fight.

He said one of the major challenges facing countries like Guyana is their lack of technical and human resources to enforce such a law.  “We must consider balancing enforcement and human rights of those who will be targeted and investigated.  Let us not overlook in our zeal and in our zest overlook the human rights issues that are connected in the fight against terrorism,” he said.

After government uses its one-seat majority in the National Assembly and the President signs it into law,  Rohee said the issue would be finding the right balance between combating terrorism and having the required resources to deal with persons who have been trained by ISIS, al-Qaeda and Boko-Haram and were now “traversing the Caribbean have a possibility of entering Guyana through its porous borders.”

Rohee, who is also a former Foreign Minister, called for more consultations and the crafting of a strategy to enforce the law.

PPP-Civic front-bencher, Gail Teixeira raised concerns about government’s inclusion of the mandatory death penalty in several sections of the Anti-Terrorism and Terrorist-Related Activities Bill although Guyana has amended its death penalty law that allows such a penalty in very few circumstances.

Guyana has not hung anyone since 1998.

Calling the Bill an “extraordinarily draconian piece of legislation,” Texeira questioned why “are we making it more stringent than the Criminal Law Offences Act.” She noted that similar legislation in Jamaica does not provide for the death sentence but life imprisonment.

She also noted that unlike Guyana’s legislation,  no one could be transferred or surrendered to another State from Jamaica without going through a “long court process.”

  • PETER

    the rotiman is talking about terrorism, his ppp government used roger khan and his killers to terrorize Guyanese for the last 16 years and why is the ppp mouth piece texeira afraid of capital punishment, they don’t hang people for white collar crimes, she is safe.

    • triinibai

      If u have evidence. Of anything of that sort of 16 years ..cause you sound conference with what u saying .. Please come forward.. To the official with your proof ..or otherwise shut n stop bla bla bla

      • Dharamkumar02

        It seems like you are deaf, dumd and blind.

        • triinibai

          Like you is another empty barrel.. Like d whole cabaanet Lol..the situation u mention ..is the exact attitude yall want Guyanese to be in ..so y’all can ride dem ..dis time na lang ago bai d people get shine..y’all ain’t gon fool dem for long ..u heard wa rumjat said ..if I said it must be fedder loydd it has to be..don’t matter if he was a disqualified tender ..da is d style ..y’all want run Guyana in ..dictators style lol

      • pollard

        this happen under the ppp/c and many more remember minister Shaw and the many young males body that has been drop dead in the city ,ask the former government why these crimes happen,?,

        • triinibai

          Sad sad ..so many family lost so much love ones .Guyana lost so much ..indeed ..but da story ..got mo side than sharma story ..no body knows

          • pollard

            I agree

  • Dharamkumar02

    Hang the entire PPP, start with rohee then jagdeo, luncheon and then the rest. I the Govt can’t them, then jail them now.

    • triinibai

      Like dem hurt u baddd bai…d PPP still give Guyanese equal rights and meck Guyanese get a better life .. Like u d sleeping in d apnc era… Well bai ..me name think Guyanese want see da movie again ..u n u baiz want ..but think again ..apnc stupie