BASSETERRE, St. Kitts, June 12, 2023 (SKNIS) – Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis, the Honourable Dr. Terrance Drew has denounced the actions by some persons in society who are attempting to politicize the recent uptick in gun-related crimes in the country.
Speaking during the Monday, June 12, 2023, Sitting of the National Assembly, Prime Minister Dr. Drew reaffirmed his government’s commitment to addressing the problem holistically. He also sought to remind citizens and residents that the issue of crime and violence is a national matter.
“I’ve been in politics for about a decade. [This is] my first time in Parliament and I’ve never, ever sought to make crime and violence a political issue, and the reason for that is because I am a medical doctor and I understand the underlying causes of these things. These issues are national issues and should be treated as such. That is why I want to call on the people of St. Kitts and Nevis to work together to make sure that we can deal with this scourge once and for all,” said Prime Minister Dr. Drew.
It is against this backdrop that the Honourable Prime Minister noted that his government is taking a more comprehensive look at the issue of crime and violence.
He said, “We must know and we have been given the information for decades now that this is an issue in the Caribbean that has to be dealt with from its root. I went to a symposium as the Prime Minister and also as the Minister of National Security, in Trinidad, where we sought to look at crime and violence from a public health perspective. It is a broad concept, but it is a concept that has been well studied scientifically and will deliver results.”
“As I speak, my advisor Dr. Patrick Martin would have met with the press to further explain what this is, and the task force has been put together for us to deal with it. One aspect of it is an all-of-society approach but this time we will apply the scientific approach to it so that we can achieve what we want to achieve,” the National Security Minister added.
The task force is chaired by Prime Minister Dr. Drew and is comprised of renowned Consultant Psychiatrist, Dr. Izben Williams, and senior management officials from across the Government, including the Ministry of National Security, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Social Development, and the Prime Minister’s Office.
Additionally, Prime Minister Dr. Drew said the Government will ensure that the National Security apparatus is equipped with the necessary resources to fully arrest the criminal elements that threaten the peace and security of citizens and residents.
Dr. Drew added, “The Ministry of National Security has been doing a number of critical things with support from regional and international partners and that has resulted in some very positive developments. No resource will be held back from this ministry to ensure that the people of St. Kitts and Nevis are safe, including our visitors when they come here.”
The Prime Minister used the occasion to urge the nation’s youth to choose more positive outlets for their energies and to seize the opportunities available to them in areas such as the orange economy, the arts, agriculture, and the various educational avenues available to them.