The Lucian Peoples Movement (LPM), has questioned whether politicians are above the law in the ongoing investigation into alleged extra-judicial killings by some members of the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force (RSLP).
LPM leader, Therold Prudent, told St Lucia Times that for years now he has been troubled by the IMPACS report, because it gave the impression that this country does not allow due process to those accused of violating laws.
“Suddenly it appeared as if we were living in a totalitarian state reminiscent of the rule of the late President of Chile, General Augusto Pinochet, where political opponents would disappear, and the bodies of local criminals would be found riddled with bullets on the streets of Santiago,” Prudent said.
“In time, I have also sought to balance the need for security on our island and the need for the police to gain the upper hand in the fight against crime, but have never been able to come to terms with the logic that even the most violent criminal among us should not be afforded due process, and that an ad hoc group of men belonging to a state apparatus could willfully serve as judge, jury and executioner,” the LPM leader observed.
He told St Lucia Times that it was ‘mystifying’ that fast forwarding to 2017, the DPP has finally decided to question and may even charge those who were involved in carrying out the alleged acts of extra judicial killings.
According to Prudent, it makes him wonder about true justice in Saint Lucia.
“The central question has never been answered, and that is, since the police are answerable to the government of Saint Lucia, who in the then United Workers Party government of 2006- 2011 gave the green light to the police to undertake such actions?” The LMP leader asked.
“Has the DPP sought to question any of those persons who served in this particular administration? And why is it that the rule of law does not apply to Saint Lucian politicians as equally as it does to their subordinates and as well, the average citizen?” He stated.
Prudent said that the LPM is not seeking to cast aspersions on anyone.
“But if we are in search of truth as a nation, why does it seem as if the DPP has curtailed investigations to focus mainly on the police, and not on those whom we may never have the privilege of knowing the degree of their involvement, if any?” He told St Lucia Times.
“The LPM is also concerned that this latest move by the DPP may be designed for political expedience , in hopes that the American government will move quickly to restore a favorable working condition with our government without a broad review or public understanding of what really transpired,” Prudent said.
He said that the LPM does not believe that the American government will be that gullible.
“In fact, in as much as we would like to see the restoration of US assistance and training for our police force, especially at this critical moment when our country is under siege as a result of rising crime, there is also an important need to ensure that equal justice prevails,” the LPM leader said.