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'Tourism product, economy & safety under threat by crime'- Hon Fahie

- calls on gov't, parents & community to fight crime
Leader of the Opposition and First District Representative, Honourable Andrew A. Fahie has called for a unified front to fight crime in the Virgin Islands. Photo: VINO/File
Michael Stevens, 26 (left) and Clevaughn Sweeney, 24 (right) were brutally murdered on Saturday, February 10, 2018 in the vicinity of the Althea Scatliffe Primary School (ASPS). Photo: Team of Reporters
Michael Stevens, 26 (left) and Clevaughn Sweeney, 24 (right) were brutally murdered on Saturday, February 10, 2018 in the vicinity of the Althea Scatliffe Primary School (ASPS). Photo: Team of Reporters
Investigators on the scene of the fatal shooting in Road Town on February 10, 2018. Photo: VINO
Investigators on the scene of the fatal shooting in Road Town on February 10, 2018. Photo: VINO
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI - "Post Hurricane Irma has unmasked a few weak areas in our national security that needs urgent review and attention through adequate funding among other immediate measures. Failure to adequately fund our only front line security agency, our police, will result in the significant damaging of our Tourism product, our economy and our overall safety in our beloved Virgin Islands."

This is according to Leader of the Opposition and First District Representative, Honourable Andrew A. Fahie (R1) in a statement following the gruesome double murder of two young men on Saturday, February 10, 2018 in the vicinity of the Althea Scatliffe Primary School (ASPS).

He urged that crime can no longer be fought normally, adding that forums with the community are a must to finding solutions.

The Opposition Leader emphasised that it will take proper funding to have cameras and police to patrol communities.

"It will take proper funding to include cameras all around the Territory, more armed officers accompanying unarmed officers on the streets all around the BVI while doing their patrolling, more timely stop and search, education in our schools and communities of the negative impact that crime has on us as a people and as a Territory, community out reach programmes because we all have a role to play in the fight against crime, our churches coming together in prayer because with God all things are possible especially in the restoring of sound moral principles in our different communities," explained Hon Fahie.

Meanwhile, he called on the parents to help in the fight, adding that they have the "greatest role" to play and if they instill "sound moral principles", it will assist in reducing crime in the territory.

The legislator said, "It is not too late. All these and more are some of the proactive approaches that must be taken forthwith so that as much as possible our Territory stays ahead of crime and not, for the most part, reacting to it. Together we must work hand in glove in exhausting all efforts in the restoring of the sense of peace, safety and security to the Virgin Islands."

Dead is 24 year old Clevaughn Sweeney and 26 year old Michael Stevens who came under heavy gunfire in the wee hours of February 10, 2018.

Residents speak out against crime

Residents have voiced their opinions over the gun crimes that have been taking place and they all agreed that these types of killings must stop and that the police needs community support.

One resident said, "I hear people blaming the police but how can they expect the police to curve crime without the public. It is also up to the legislators to put in the books strict gun laws."

Sharon N. Smith, a resident of Baughers Bay pointed out that the police are not patrolling the neighbourhoods as they did back in the days.

Ms Smith said, "Everybody wants to sit in the air condition office. We once had police officers who cared about our people, but we constantly bringing in them people from the United Kingdom (UK) who really don't care about us."

Another passionate resident told our newsroom he thinks capital punishment is needed in the Virgin Islands (VI).

He said, "If the government start hanging for these senseless crimes, only then we would be able to live a happy life in our homeland."

Another resident believes that hanging will not help because the police must first catch the criminals in order to do that, while suggesting that the community needs to come together to help fight crime.

"Hanging will not solve the problem because you have to catch them first. What we need here is the people of the BVI to start coming together and say enough is enough. We need to stop cast blame and do our part to bring these hoodlums to justice," said the resident.

29 Responses to “'Tourism product, economy & safety under threat by crime'- Hon Fahie”

  • True (12/02/2018, 11:00) Like (2) Dislike (2) Reply
    Yes , but this is a Tola problem, not a BVI problem but everything becomes a BVI problem when its on Tola but everthing good becomes just on Tortola, makes me laugh and sad
  • voter (12/02/2018, 11:13) Like (12) Dislike (3) Reply
    Under ndp crime is up under VIP crime is down
    • @ voter (12/02/2018, 11:51) Like (8) Dislike (2) Reply
      because with the VIP the little man eat with the NDP only the rich keep eating
  • wize up (12/02/2018, 11:33) Like (18) Dislike (2) Reply
    Hon Fahie now you cooking with Gas: it is my opinion that we have 3 vexing issues in this place
    1. Political Issues
    2. Social Issues
    3. Enforment Issues

    For me those social issues far outweigh the other 2 issues.....some of spend far to much playing political games while our son & daughters suffer our people are suffering(some more than other simply based on which party in power)

    Under enforcement issues we have
    1. immigration
    2. customs
    3. police
    4. labour

    The residents or citizens can take the LAW into their own hand because we will be liable for criminal prosecution....stop blaming the people and go after those mandated with enforcement of our laws: yes!!! We should talk what we see even share information(then what)
    • BoSang (12/02/2018, 14:09) Like (9) Dislike (1) Reply
      The Hill man used to enforce the immigration laws with fairness and balance but look what the government did, remove him and put mediocrity to head that department look at the results. ZDid they really expected who there to work magic? Time will tell... Hmmm
      • wize up (12/02/2018, 19:05) Like (2) Dislike (1) Reply
        @ BoSang: yep; Hill is the right man for immigration and Mr Smith does well for customs..
  • Well said (12/02/2018, 11:35) Like (9) Dislike (0) Reply
    Well said Hon. Fahie
  • Jack Daniel Stewart (12/02/2018, 11:35) Like (13) Dislike (1) Reply
    The BVI lacks leadership why crime creeping up. Get rid of your current government. All of them are bad business. Sudden you will see a drop in crime.
  • wow (12/02/2018, 11:35) Like (5) Dislike (1) Reply
    Look what my BVI has come to...sigh.
  • My Take (12/02/2018, 11:36) Like (13) Dislike (1) Reply
    The street crimes are now matching the sitting government white collar crimes.
  • who vex (12/02/2018, 11:37) Like (15) Dislike (2) Reply
    Who vex stay vex but the ndp is not serious about fighting crime.
    • @who vex (12/02/2018, 12:39) Like (15) Dislike (1) Reply
      How could they be serious. It is all related boo. Start from within. Get rid of them all. Time to clean house.
    • Agreed to the fullest (12/02/2018, 14:25) Like (16) Dislike (2) Reply
      @Who Vex, I am with you on this. Exactly, that Pixie Styx gang called the NDP Political Party is so damn corrupt they make Jolly Rancher look stupid. They could care less about fighting crime. Honestly folks, it is time to give the NDP their eviction papers. The power is in your hands, let them know and understand you put them in office and you can take them out of office.
  • for me (12/02/2018, 11:40) Like (19) Dislike (2) Reply
    Thank you for your leadership Fahie and for being the voice for the voiceless.
  • lodger (12/02/2018, 12:32) Like (4) Dislike (1) Reply
    Two men in their mid twenties, on the road at 4am! Did they have regular jobs? Were they on their way to an early shift?. Many questions to be answered here. Are drive by shootings to become the norm?
    • to lodger (12/02/2018, 17:46) Like (3) Dislike (1) Reply
      Interesting questions about those two that were shot. Also, from the talk that's going around it seems like one of them may have been involved in the 11 yr old child's murder. If that is true, the BVI has gone to the dogs
      • True (12/02/2018, 22:52) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
        Lodger if that is the case, remember people was saying they were going to apply swift street justice to the person/persons involved in the West Side shooting. Not saying he was involved but it makes you wonder.
  • Dislikes (12/02/2018, 12:57) Like (14) Dislike (1) Reply
    AGAIN . i blame NDP , their example of greed and corrupt , and disregard for the people .. I can tell Smith to his FACE .. Most Ndp useless and for their own .. This is a fact ..
    • @dislikes (12/02/2018, 15:09) Like (3) Dislike (2) Reply
      Correction!! They all useless especially as it relates to crime. They too busy covering their white collar tracks.
  • Diplomat (12/02/2018, 14:30) Like (8) Dislike (1) Reply
    Increasing property and violent crime, especially murders, can be the dagger in the heart of tourism, 1/2 of the economic twin pillars, as it probably did for St. Croix in the 1970s with the Fountain Valley Golf Course incident. St. Croix is probably still reeling both economically and socially from that massacre on the golf course. The violent and property crime scourge need to be arrested.

    The murderers need to be identified, tried, convicted and lost in jail. Nonetheless, we cannot just jail our way out of this problem. We cannot just treat the symptoms; we need to find and root out the root causes. The community is a key player in helping the RVIPF to root out the problem and bring the perpetrators to justice.

    But the RVIPF has a systemic problem; it leaks like a sieve and residents for their own personal safety lack trust in it. The RVIPF is an indisciplined agency and is dysfunctional. Feud among local, regional and UK officers is not helping matters. It needs resources but just throwing money at it is not a panacea for healing its myriad of problems. The community is in my opinion willing to assist the RVIPF but it needs much more from the force. The force must be more than a pay check. It needs to demonstrate rock solid professionalism; it needs a rebirth, a renaissance of sorts.

    Moreover, the community must also do its part. An improved quality of life and standard of living is no doubt a good thing. However, the drive/quest for materialism resulted in a causalty—-the children. The children are lost and not part of nation building. For there to be growth continuity, there must a generation to pass baton to. Where is the next generation? They are either chillin at Balo or St. Lucia being non productive or resting in the grave yards. This is a social problem that needs to be fixed; it is a travesty; the whole community must be engaged——parents, family members, neighbors, schools, NGOs, churches, governmen, Police........etc. Bring back the “Village”. Though a smaller population and less multicultural, the Village worked. The Village was a check valve on society.

  • peaceful (12/02/2018, 19:39) Like (1) Dislike (4) Reply
    Time will tell, no government can fix crime now.
    It will get worse every day. People need to keep praying for a government that will bring peace and keep peace forever an ever.
    So throwing stones. It would not help PRAY
  • Mr. Hodge (12/02/2018, 20:29) Like (5) Dislike (1) Reply
    Correction Hon. Fahie, we have no national security! The events on the morning of September 7th and after has proven that. We can’t handle the criminal element that we corrently have, we can’t handle any type of civil unrest. Our borders and ports of entry are not secured... Soper’s, Road Town, Gun Creek, JVD. There is more firepower on the street than there is at task force. Public confidence in the government is at an all time
    Low and not too long ago the subject of independence came up.... REALLY??? Of all the community discussions that have taken place on rebuilding and moving forward, has there been any talk of REAL national security? We are a community comprised of a large lawless populous. The looting has receded but the looters are among us and walk freely. Did they have a heart change or are they simply waiting for another opportunity? Is there any rehabilitation happening in the schools to circumvent that type of ‘take it if you want it’ mindset? There is much to be done sir... much
  • @Diplomat (12/02/2018, 20:39) Like (3) Dislike (3) Reply
    I couldn't agree with you more, but you see there is corruption at top of the police force, the open-ended oppression against locals continues and the powers that be not doing anything about it. Is the Lucan investigations final or a half done job. We need to know when they gonna face reality and stop sticking their heads in the sand. The public knows what goes in the force and not gonna talk, cuz they know what time it is. Governor, Commissioner, Premier and Opposition are you guys sleeping? Well you better wake up and see what happening. Our Country is slipping away from us and the public know why, we facing the persecution every day. The VI Massive gonna rebel against all evil forces.
    • To Diplomat (12/02/2018, 21:28) Like (12) Dislike (0) Reply
      Let me correct you in that the National Security of the country deals with crime which are the Premier and Governor not the Opposition.
      • Disinterested (13/02/2018, 10:27) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
        @To Diplomat, really! Stop the nonsense. Is not the Opposition in the HOA? Does it not vote to authorize and appropriate funding for the RVIPF? Strupes!
  • ex-Cruzan (12/02/2018, 21:56) Like (2) Dislike (1) Reply
    I notice the tourism product is dwindling already. The 2018 cruise ship schedule for Tortola shows mostly 1 small cruise ship every few days for this month and March. No multiple ships in one day, no large cruise ships, etc. The scheduled cruise ship in Tortola for Sun. 11 Feb. never arrived. The first Disney ship is scheduled for 10 April. Will it dock in Tortola on that date or go to some other safer island?
    • wize up (13/02/2018, 13:10) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      ex Cruzan: the thing mash up(ask someone to send some photos of the multi million place for the cruise ships)......some of major stores might not even continue their BVI operations(have you ever seen a blind man leading another blind man..we have it going on right here !!!!
  • Capt. (17/02/2018, 22:14) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    This is so true more money to police


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