Chief Secretary calls for crime stats to be separated

THA Chief Secretary Orville London has renewed his call for separating Tobago’s crime statistics from those of Trinidad.

London said a recent news article proves lumping the two figures together is causing harm to the island’s tourism thrust.

During the weekly Post Executive Council media briefing at the Calder Hall Administrative Complex, London said the article is cause for concern, as he quoted the report.

“‘Trinidad and Tobago has been ranked seventh among ten countries with the listing of countries with the highest crime rate.’ That’s the opening paragraph,” London said.

The Chief Secretary said Trinidad and Tobago is the only Caribbean country on the list. The article described the country as a seemingly tropical paradise, adding that once tourists leave resort areas, “Trinidad and Tobago both have an epidemic of gang-related crime.”

London said he requested crime statistics for both islands from acting Assistant Commissioner of Police Garfield Moore. The figures indicated that from January 1 to June 19 in 2015, the country recorded 189 murders, two of which occurred in Tobago. For that period so far this year, there have been 215 murders overall, none of which were recorded in Tobago.

“We as Tobagonians should realise that when compared to most other islands in the region and maybe most other countries in the world, Tobago is relatively crime-free,” London stressed.

London appealed for the “disaggregation of the Tobago crime statistics from the national crime statistics.”

He said the issue should be made a priority as linking the crime statistics of the two countries is not fair to Tobago.

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