Prime Minister Philip J. Pierre, asserting that no one is happy about the crime situation, cautioned Monday about creating an environment of fear in Saint Lucia.
“An environment of fear doesn’t help anybody. We have to be alert. Law enforcement must do all they can do – we as citizens must do all we can do, but we cannot create an environment of fear,” Pierre, responsible for National Security, told reporters.
“We can’t politicise it or even be happy when there is a crime and say: ‘Crime still happening and you all in government’,” he asserted.
Pierre indicated that an environment of fear could stop economic activity and growth.
Saint Lucia has recorded 62 homicides amid a spike in gun violence this year.
But the police have recently reported gun and ammunition seizures and arrests.
The Prime Minister thinks the police are doing a ‘very good job.’
Nevertheless, he told reporters that law enforcement officers must continue and not relax.
“They have to push with the resources that they have,” Pierre stated.
And he warned young people that having a firearm could land them in jail for 25 years, regardless of whether they use the weapon.
“I can only pass the laws – the courts have to do the rest,” was the Castries East MP’s response when asked whether the gun laws were working.
Pierre also disclosed that the government was giving the police, who have an operational plan for the Christmas season, two more patrol vehicles.
In addition, he indicated that there seemed to be a pandemic of crime in the region.
As a result, Pierre believes that Caribbean Community (CARICOM) leaders, when they next meet, must make the discussion of crime a priority.
Headline photo: Philip J. Pierre (Stock image)