Crime is once again on the upswing in Central Trinidad. Just two days ago, a McBean, Couva family was tormented by masked gunmen who forcibly entered their home in the early morning. This follows a spate of home invasions in Central, with robbery being the main motive.
With each passing day, reports of praedial larceny theft, break-ins and burglary continue to reach my office, much of which remains absent from the media, mainly because victims of crime do not report these occurrences. Much of what the TTPS does in criminal detection and crime-fighting is information driven, and I therefore encourage all victims of crime in whatever form, to please report such to the respective and/or relevant authorities.
I have personally spoken to some of the families who have been victims of crime over the past few days who all are traumatized by the ordeal. They no longer feel safe in their own homes, they cannot sleep at nights and when they do, they are awakened by the slightest noise they hear. These families are now virtually living in fear.
In the 2021 National Budget that was recently passed in Parliament, the Government appropriated over $2.5 BILLION to the Ministry of National Security. This follows a cumulative five-year allocation towards National Security of almost $19 BILLION between 2015–2020. It would certainly not be unreasonable to ask what exactly has the PNM accomplished with respect to improving the level of safety and security for law-abiding citizens of Trinidad and Tobago, having spent $19 BILLION behind National Security.
Has the Government taken into account, the rapid growth that is taking place in central Trinidad and the associated increased targeting of this locality by the criminal element? How much of the Ministry’s budgetary allocation has gone to the Central Division and more importantly, is it sufficient to make any impact on crime-fighting?
The constituency of Couva North, and surrounding constituencies are now under siege by the criminal element, while the Central Division of the TTPS appears to be in dire need of additional support, by way of vehicles and human resources to effectively patrol and respond to the increasing criminal activities.
As the elected representative of the constituents of Couva North, I issue a call of National Unity, for every citizen and all agencies to come together and join in the fight against crime.
Today I call on the Government and the Minister of National Security to do the job that you have been assigned – protect our citizens’ constitutional rights and serve the people!