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FNMs demand action on crime

Opposition party says govt not doing enough as

Dozens of Free National Movement (FNM) supporters demonstrated outside the House of Assembly yesterday to bring awareness to increased crime in The Bahamas.

Opposition parliamentarians and others in the FNM leadership, including leader Michael Pintard and deputy leader Shanendon Cartwright, were among those present. The protestors were dressed in black.

FNM Chairman Dr. Duane Sands said focus should be paid to the suffering and challenges being experienced by Bahamians.

“Violence in The Bahamas has increased once again to the point where, at the mid part of the year, June 30, 2022, we have eclipsed 75 deaths,” Sands said.

“If this continues at this rate, we will exceed the historic record of homicides in the Commonwealth of The Bahamas. Each of those victims is not only him or herself a loss but a loss to families, loved ones, children, grandparents, aunts and uncles and, in particular, children.

“We applaud the actions of the Royal Bahamas Police Force. We support them. We are encouraged by what they are attempting to do, but we would like to make a gentle but firm prod for the policymakers to understand that it cannot be business as usual …”

Sands said the government needs to sit down, collaborate and consult to combat these “incredibly high levels of carnage on our streets”.

He said the opposition is willing to make recommendations to address the issue.

“The leader of the opposition … presented to the prime minister, at the time of their one-day [crime conclave], a list of recommendations and suggestions,” Sands said.

“They are holistic and they go from activities in the community, activities in the home, activities for back to school and so on and so forth. It also includes saturation patrols, random high-profile cruising to deal with the porous borders that we have.

“There are a number of recommendations that we are able to share once again with the general public, because we don’t believe that it is reasonable to only point fingers and not make suggestions.”

There has been a sharp uptick in murders in the last few weeks.

Commissioner of Police Clayton Fernander said on Tuesday that 55 percent of murder victims were suspects in murder cases and had been granted bail by the Supreme Court.

“Our intelligence suggests that these individuals are being targeted by rival gangs,” he said.

“The loss of one life is too much. We are losing too many of our young men on both sides of the coin as victims and perpetrators.”

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Jasper Ward

Jasper Ward started at The Nassau Guardian in September 2018. Ward covers a wide range of national and social issues. Education: Goldsmiths, University of London, MA in Race, Media and Social Justice

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