Anony­mous Sources Threaten to Re­lease IMPACS Re­port to over­seas Hu­man Rights Or­ga­ni­za­tions!

The Star (St. Lucia) - - LOCAL - By Rick Wayne

Hav­ing ac­knowl­edged on 20 Au­gust 2013 the Amer­i­can govern­ment’s sus­pen­sion of vi­tal as­sis­tance to the Royal Saint Lucia Po­lice Force, mon­e­tary and oth­er­wise, this is what the prime min­is­ter said on the is­sue nearly two years later: “The stark re­al­ity we con­front is that the United States will only lift those sanc­tions if in their judg­ment all nec­es­sary cor­rec­tive steps have been taken.

“The fact re­mains that for a tainted unit or mem­ber of such a unit to be­come el­i­gi­ble for train­ing again, the Sec­re­tary of State must de­ter­mine and re­port to the United States Congress that the govern­ment of the af­fected country, in this case Saint Lucia, is tak­ing ef­fec­tive steps to bring the re­spon­si­ble mem­bers of the se­cu­rity forces to jus­tice. In ef­fect, if the sanc­tions are to be re­moved, we must show proof that we are tak­ing cor­rec­tive steps to deal with the sit­u­a­tion.”

Last De­cem­ber the prime min­is­ter promised con­cerned rep­re­sen­ta­tives of the 28-mem­ber-state Euro­pean Union that by April this year the DPP’s of­fice would be in a po­si­tion to bring to jus­tice po­lice of­fi­cers, govern­ment of­fi­cials and busi­ness peo­ple sus­pected of in­volve­ment in so-called “gross vi­o­la­tions of hu­man rights” at the time of Op­er­a­tion Re­store Con­fi­dence.

In late Jan­uary 2016 the U.S. au­thor­i­ties re­minded the prime min­is­ter via his govern­ment’s rep­re­sen­ta­tives in Wash­ing­ton of their un­changed po­si­tion re­gard­ing “the fail­ure of your govern­ment to ef­fec­tively in­ves­ti­gate and prose­cute those in your se­cu­rity forces al­leged to have com­mit­ted ex­tra-ju­di­cial killings. The al­le­ga­tions were most re­cently high­lighted in the CARICOM IMPACS re­port that was com­pleted at the re­quest of your govern­ment.”

More­over: “The De­part­ment of State has been clear and very con­sis­tent on the need for in­ves­ti­ga­tions and pros­e­cu­tions by your govern­ment for sev­eral years. Our Em­bassy in Bridgetown con­tin­ues to work with its in­ter­locu­tors in your govern­ment to see how we can as­sist with ef­fec­tive in­ves­ti­ga­tions and pros­e­cu­tions, and we con­tinue to co­or­di­nate our re­sponse on the lack of progress with other coun­tries who are com­mit­ted to sup­port­ing the rule of law and the in­ves­ti­ga­tion and con­vic­tion of those who have been cred­i­bly al­leged to have com­mit­ted ex­tra-ju­di­cial killings across the Caribbean.”

In an­other mis­sive the prime min­is­ter was again re­minded “the Em­bassy of the United States to Bar­ba­dos and the East­ern Caribbean en­cour­ages the Govern­ment of Saint Lucia to take all avail­able mea­sures to guar­an­tee the rule of law is up­held. We stand by our of­fer to as­sist Saint Lucia’s ef­forts to en­sure due process in the frame­work of Saint Lucia’s crim­i­nal jus­tice sys­tem. A clear demon­stra­tion of the govern­ment of Saint Lucia’s com­mit­ment to the rule of law would ben­e­fit the peo­ple of Saint Lucia as well as Saint Lucia’s in­ter­na­tional stand­ing as a trusted, demo­cratic part­ner in eco­nomic and se­cu­rity co­op­er­a­tion.”

Not­with­stand­ing his pledge to the EU am­bas­sadors last De­cem­ber, there has been no of­fi­cial an­nounce­ment of progress at the DPP’s of­fice. Vic­to­ria Charles, who re­tired two months ago, has not been re­placed and by all the signs IMPACS—with all its omi­nous pos­si­bil­i­ties—re­mains in limbo. Mean­while, it ap­pears copies of the clas­si­fied re­port have leaked into the pub­lic do­main. For three weeks now I have been re­ceiv­ing from an anony­mous source what may or may not be gen­uine pages from the doc­u­ment that many say only the prime min­is­ter and the DPP have seen.

The lat­est re­ceived pages iden­tify by name the eight Ja­maican in­ves­ti­ga­tors cho­sen by the Saint Lucia govern­ment to look into sus­pect po­lice killings in 2010 and 2011.

Ac­cord­ing to page 9 of the os­ten­si­ble re­port the in­ves­ti­ga­tors at­tempted to look into the death of Ja­cob Owen Jules but were stymied by named un­co­op­er­a­tive of­fi­cers. “This file was re­quested from . . . and to date the team has not re­ceived a copy.”

Fully in­ves­ti­gated was the shoot­ing death of Peter ‘Moon­light’ Wil­liams “who was shot and killed by the po­lice on 28 March 2010, about 10.30 pm at Pi­geon Point . . .” I have cho­sen not to re­lease at this time the re­ported find­ings while I await con­fir­ma­tion from the au­thor­i­ties that what I have been re­ceiv­ing is gen­uine— which would in­di­cate se­cu­rity prob­lems at the high­est lev­els.

Some of the find­ings defy be­lief and sug­gest why the U.S. De­part­ment and the EU re­fer to them as “gross vi­o­la­tions of hu­man rights.”

As for the much talked about death list that the prime min­is­ter claimed on TV he had seen while in op­po­si­tion, its ex­is­tence was in­deed con­firmed, as the prime min­is­ter had last year in­formed the na­tion.

“While the list ap­pears to rep­re­sent a link as­so­ci­a­tion chart nor­mally used for in­tel­li­gence guide within law en­force­ment or­ga­ni­za­tions,” says the page in hand, “there is ev­i­dence that the Spe­cial Team/Task Force placed heavy re­liance on this list to tar­get some of the in­di­vid­u­als who were killed.

“Dur­ing the team’s in­ves­ti­ga­tions, it was con­firmed that sev­eral of the de­ceased per­sons were killed af­ter su­pe­rior or­ders were given. Of the 16 in­di­vid­u­als killed within the pe­riod in­di­cated for re­view, a to­tal of six ap­peared on this list­ing re­ferred to by the news me­dia (so­cial, elec­tronic) and citizens of Saint Lucia as a hit list and as a black list.”

To the best of my knowl­edge no re­porter has ever claimed to have seen a death list. Re­mark­ably, there is no men­tion of the man who first con­firmed its ex­is­tence. As I say, I have no way of know­ing whether the source of the in­for­ma­tion here quoted is the real McCoy. Only the prime min­is­ter knows for cer­tain.

This week the for­mer home af­fairs min­is­ter Guy May­ers served no­tice of his in­ten­tion to sue the prime min­is­ter for slan­der in re­la­tion to his pub­lic state­ments on the 2010-2011 fa­tal po­lice shoot­ings.

Mean­while, I have been in­formed by my anony­mous sources that he/she (I’ve taken re­lated calls from a male and a fe­male) fully in­tends to re­lease the full re­port to over­seas hu­man rights or­ga­ni­za­tions if our govern­ment con­tin­ues to de­lay plac­ing IMPACS be­fore the courts!

Prime Min­is­ter Kenny An­thony: Did any­one ac­tu­ally be­lieve he planned to keep his IMPACS-re­lated prom­ises to the Euro­pean Union and the US State De­part­ment, let alone the peo­ple of Saint Lucia? How many of those fin­gered by his Ja­maican in­ves­ti­ga­tors will present them­selves for elec­tions?

Jus­tice Min­is­ter Vic­tor La Corbiniere: It’s hard to pin down what this man has to laugh about, keep­ing in mind his count­less gaffes that con­trib­uted to our ac­knowl­edged bro­ken jus­tice sys­tem!

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