By Caribbean News Global contributor
CASTRIES, St Lucia – It is not without reason many conceive the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force (RSLPF) is viewed as an incompetent police force, unfit for modern-day policing in addition to the burdens placed on taxpayers, and the security of Saint Lucia, on the dark chapter of the second massacre within ten days.
On February 23, the RSLPF are said to be investigating a double homicide at La Toc, Castries. Two males: one aged – 49 from La Toc, Road and 34-years from Bexon, were recorded as the island’s latest homicide victims.
Depending on who is keeping count, the total number of homicides, as of February 23, 2022, stands at 13.
“This precedes reports of a shooting incident in Gros Islet, on Tuesday. Two males were reportedly shot overnight in what is described as a drive-by shooting – both have been hospitalized. There are also reports of gunshots fired in the town of Soufriere, Tuesday, Independence Day,” according to media reports.
Meanwhile, Saint Lucians have not gotten over Sunday, February 13, 2022, in the community of Coolie Town, where a mass shooting, at a function of some kind, within confinement hours of COVID-19 protocols occurred. Three persons died and five were injured, including a police officer.
The actions and/or inactions relieve that the national security and capability of Saint Lucia’s security is in a protraction state of peril.
February 2022 has so far exceeded double homicides in the history of Saint Lucia and placed in double jeopardy, the security of the country, celebrating its 43rd anniversary of independence.
Prime Minister Philip Pierre, delivering his first independence address as the ninth prime minister, on Tuesday, said:
“For years, we have said that our youth are our greatest asset. Yet, they are now at the greatest risk from crime, anti-social behavior and poverty.
We must heal the root causes of our pain, whatever they may be. We must render ourselves physically and mentally fit soldiers in our war against poverty, against discrimination, against poor education, unemployment and crime.
Recently, we have witnessed an unacceptable increase in criminal activity, mainly gun-related homicides, causing unnecessary pain and suffering to many. We must end that menace. We must build respect and care for each other. To do so we must have a sense of self and sense of identity.
Celebrating each human life, acknowledging the worth of every human being calls for stronger public education, more equity in the distribution of wealth.
“However, there must be observance of the laws of the land and the police will be expected to do their duty in causing a reduction in crime. We will prioritize spending on law and order. Law enforcement agencies like the police will be resourced with modern tools for crime detection.”
Commenting on social media the handle Milford offered the following:
“I accept the fact that the police cannot be everywhere at the same time but what I cannot accept is the fact the police does not have a regular presence or police patrol, especially in the so-called hotspots of Saint Lucia. It is a proven fact that regular and effective police patrols be it on foot, horseback, motorcycle, motor vehicles etc., is a serious deterrent to crime.”
It has been previously explained, Crime is big business in Saint Lucia:
“Crime is now big business in Saint Lucia, there are persons who are known hitmen in Saint Lucia and these guys will not hesitate, if they get the right amount of money, to put a hit on you.”
- Read more here.
To further understand the deficiency and the dysfunctional apparatus of the RSLPF, a letter to the editor published June 2020 reads – St Lucia’s acting police commissioner should be fired and the RSLPF disbanded. [Now Commissioner of Police]
The letter said:
“To reiterate, it is my view that the RSLPF must be disbanded in much that same as Minneapolis disbanded its police department seven years ago.”
“I must say, the agents of law and order in Saint Lucia are appalling,” concluded the letter.
Saint Lucia’s National Green Party (NGP), Andre de Caires, in an apparent agreement to the obvious said February 23, 2022:
“A shake-up may be necessary. Is he (Desir) able to do the job and lead as the commissioner? I am not sure. I think it will be up to the minister of national security to make that decision,” he told St Lucia Times.
Previously, a Caribbean News Global (CNG) resource, said:
“ The hierarchy of the RSLPF are out of their wits,” hitherto, “the dysfunctional RSLPF remains in peril as a short-handed force, with a poor human resource component, intelligence, enforcement and communication and of no match to the elements playing hide and seek, police and crooks in the streets of Saint Lucia.”
“The reality remains – the RSLPF – should be stripped to a constabulary police service,” the intelligence resource recommended.
Commentating on social media, the handle Martha Rogers, said:
“The illegal guns pose an existential threat to the safety and security of every Lucian. We need strict laws, enforcement capacity, tough consequences and education to reduce gun violence. The guns need to be taken away by any means necessary. The safety and security of citizens are non-negotiable.”