LPM criticizes PM’s response to US ban on training St. Lucia police

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LPM criticizes PM’s response to US ban on training St. Lucia police
LPM leader Therold Prudent
LPM leader Therold Prudent

The Lucian People’s Movement (LPM) has said it is “disgusted” with an address issued by Prime Minister Dr. Kenny Antony in response to the US’s decision to ban St. Lucia police from participating in security related training that it funds.

In a statement, the LPM accused Dr. Anthony of using “blame game tactics” in his address, and stated that the government has “failed to take responsibility” for the issue.

Dr. Anthony in a statement on Tueday night said that the killing of 12 persons by police officers between 2010 and 2011 under what was described then as “Operation Restore Confidence” is the reason behind the United States’ decision to disallow officers of the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force from participating in training programmes arranged or financed by the United States.

This, along with the plans to deal with the issue, was announced by Prime Minister Dr. Kenny Anthony during his address entitled “An Unhappy Episode.”

The LPM’s entire statement has been reprinted below:

The Lucian People’s Movement (LPM), express its profound disgust with the continued “blame game tactic” that Kenny Anthony continues to use in his government’s defence, in response to the United States’ decisive action of disallowing members of the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force to benefit from security related training funded by U.S. authorities.

According to the LPM leader Therold Prudent, Kenny Anthony refuses to take responsibility for his own government’s unacceptable response to the “extra-judicial killings” committed by an “ad hoc” group of officers within the police force. Prudent added that, “Governance is about taking full responsibility and correcting the preserved mistakes and awful practices of previous administrations.

As the leader of our nation, coupled with his profession as an attorney, Kenny Anthony should have immediately dealt with this grave issue, knowing full well, there are dire consequences for ignoring human rights abuses.

The LPM noted a critical point in the Prime Minister’s statement on Tuesday evening, stating the following: “Yesterday, I was also advised that the United States has gone one step further and suspended all assistance to the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force.” This strong signal given to Kenny Anthony could also have been interpreted as his refusal to act after eighteen months in office. Also, the minimal attention paid to those human rights violations (by his government), is just as disappointing to U.S. authorities as the United Workers Party’s unsatisfactory response to the crime problem on the island.

Having noted the dismal approach of the SLP administration to dealing with this serious human rights issue; the LPM continues to be disturbed by some of the strategies Kenny Anthony has pursued to solve this problem.

According to Prudent, “How can the Prime Minister invite a CARICOM Implementation Agency for Crime and Security (IMPACS) to investigate the unlawful conduct surrounding the “extra-judicial killings” when some CARICOM countries have their own issues that potentially violate the ’Leahy Law’?”

An effective step to dealing with this crisis would be to invite an independent investigative unit from Canada or Europe where a more thorough investigation consistent with international investigative and reporting standards can be expected.

The Lucian People’s Movement recall occasions where some local organizations and professionals were ridiculed for attempting to promote human rights laws in all facets of our daily activities on the island, – initiatives that would have paved the way for a more transparent and accountable government today.

Most recently, we witness that very same behaviour after Prudent, courageously sent out a strong message to Taiwan’s president, Ma Ying-Jeou, requesting that former Taiwan president Chen Shui-Bian be provided medical parole – a decision that would meet human rights standards.

Later, in a published story entitled, “Call by St. Lucia political party echoes around the world”, Prudent, again emphasized the need to seriously consider human rights laws when conducting ourselves on the island.

He said, “Let’s not forget the lesson for us in Latin America and the Caribbean is simple – ‘human rights matter’ in other parts of the world. As a region, we cannot continue to operate in a bubble with outstretched arms for foreign aid. We cannot continue to arm ourselves with the narrow mindedness of local politics with all of its self-righteousness. And, we cannot continue to ignore the personal sufferings of citizens locally and in distant lands, which daily pay the ultimate price for our chronic dependence on foreign aid.”

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12 COMMENTS

  1. USA has every right to be disgusted with the police in st lucia not saying all of them are criminals but most are let me tell you why 3 to 2 months ago my husband was with his friends by the road and truck with 4 officers pulled up and told him to take of his arm color shorts and blue jay hat that is also arm colored so he did standing in the with just boxer and his T-shirt on well today out of all day we went by a shop , I c this man come I'm watching him as I see the hat I go closer and that the hat off his head and ask him where he got this from it was and is my husbands hat cuz I put his nick name on the back of it so I ask the man where did u get this hat he telling me custom's told him really cuz someone took this from my husband and I want to know where you got it ,the man take the hat from me and I went to call me husband who was off to the side and funny thing is the very man I was questioning was the officer that took his hat . So u see how your officers are dealing with the very same ppl they have to be protecting treating them like shit and robbing them of there clothes then happily wearing them ! So u tell me how and where can I get that back and how is that fair to the lucian ppl when ur cops making up bullshit just to rob and take from ppl . How do the ppl trust them when them there self are who the ppl need saving from !

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  2. The Prime Minister is playing a blame game which is just plain mediocrity for a commander in chief. The PM needs to properly address these issues which are affecting the island police force, regardless of under which political party the incidents occurred. This situation is a current problem thus it’s the PM Job to take action as the leader of the St. Lucia Labour party and employer of the St. Lucia police force.

    I lost all respect for Prime Minister Kenney Anthony, former Prime Minister King and the late Sir john Compton because human rights violations have been a part of all their legacy and yet to be approached and addressed in the correct manner. These leaders have yet to put the human rights interest of St. Lucians on the forefront; they rather politicize everything or do absolutely nothing. These leaders have had several opportunities to do so in the pass but failed the citizens of St. Lucia countless times. This has been happening under all three (3) Prime Ministers reign. Allegedly Members of the police force have seldom been held accountable for the actions by any of these leaders hence the reason for the USA taking action.
    It’s not appalling that the USA had to apply such drastic measure to ensure that officers are held accountable for their human rights violations. Allegedly there several sexual assault cases against police officers which never reach the criminal justice system. Also there are several incidents where officers do warrant less searches and individuals are imprisoned with evidence obtain illegally hence the reason that officers have been acting as the law of the land and continued to violate the human rights of individuals. In 2013 Rastafarian's who get detained by police officers are still faced with the injustice of having their dread locks cut off for no apparent reason.

    The USA did this because these leaders have been playing politics for too long rather than having concern for the human rights of its citizen, I hope this opens the eyes of the PM and others.

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  3. With an age of information,Age of Enlightenment, Age of Thecnology, How well do we used it After all the years under a Compton ruled, Do we forget the days when we had to put locks on our home phone Whiles Compton allowed cable and wireless to rob us left and right, Which party and which leader who change the communication monopoly in st lucia, you be the judge. prudent is not so prudent please give jack his jacket

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  4. Good day Mr Prudent, I have not issues with you statement, however I have a big issue with your total disrespect for the office of the Prime Ministership. Throughout your statement you contine to address the Prime Minister as mere Kenny Anthony. One may say well that's his name, yes it is but he hold the office of Prime Minister and it deserves respect. I believe Mr Prudent in his statement should have address the leader of government as Prime Minister Kenny Anthony or use the term The Prime Minister. His total disrespect for the office was obnoxious at best. How do you Mr Prudent be respected if you yourself do not show respect? I am not attacking you personally but rather I am sick of all the political parties showing total disrespect to leaders, and we ask ourselves why our young people are so disrespectful?

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  5. It is very disheartening and absurd for the leader of the LPM to characterize the PM's address as apportioning blame. How disingenuous can one be. As was clearly stated by the PM, the "atrocities" were committed under the previous administration. The Prime Minister has offered his mea culpa to the United States and this should not be construed as " blame game tactics." Given the history of the United States we should not be surprised by its belligerence.
    Mr. Prudent cannot support his elegant rhetoric with facts, and should, therefore , consign himself to the dustbin of history.

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  6. Another bullseye from prudent. He talks a good game. I wonder if Lucians will ever open their minds and look past the failed two party system. I am amazed that you continue to give Kenny the benefit of the doubt because his record is absolutely appalling.

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  7. I totally agree with the views expressed by the LPM. I feel the prime minister has done a grave injustice to Saint Lucians with his statement. Perhaps this will be of immense help to him in his courtship with ALBA and his commie friends!

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