i caught an ad in one of the papers about consultations about the guyana anti-terrorism bill a couple days before. it didn’t come back to mind again until the morning of, december 28 about an hour before the 10pm start time
i dropped everything and rushed up to the convention centre cause what am realising in this scuntry for a good while now, bills, laws, fiats and commandments are being put on the books with nary a hold up what the shiz is this all about? from the mutton
trust us is the new black
there were some lovely ladies at a table downstairs doing a sign up thing and giving out paper in a manilla envelope. the upside, you also get a free pen.
the first thing that struck me about the anti-terrorism bill consultations was, it wasn’t going to be a consultation. they just calling it that. the facilitator explained that since the bill is so long and time so short we wont be going through it item by item at the consultation
they gave out a free copy of the bill and i must say i was shocked. 107 pages long! 106 double sided
so let me get this straight. am supposed to read this and add meaningful impact to this session all at once? fascinating
a few of the usual suspects were seated to include the crime chief wendell balnhum, gerry gouveia, norman mclean and some other folks i dont know. but it wasn’t plenty counting the media and legal affairs people
a guy name john fraser was the facillitator. after he did some preliminaries attoryney general basil williams made some brief remarks and took a few jabs at the PPP for pussyfooting with the bill since 2011
…because of the clamour we’ve decided to hold consultations
the Anti-Terrorism and Terrorist Related Activities Bill 2015 has two clauses from Vienna Convention, the International Convention for the Suppression of Financing of Terrorism 1999 and Palermo Convention. Recommendation 35 given to Guyana by by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) ordered Guyana to add 3 articles and the bill is being rushed through parliament because in two weeks there is a meeting in panama of the americas regional review group (AARG) and if you miss this deadline is six months again before you get a chance to sit with them and in the meantime you will be in the penalty period
stay with me am not done yet. this is all paraphrasing what the attorney general said
a govt can say we are independent, talk is free but FATF and CFATTF can do serious damage to any economy whether you like it or not. they can do you damage – attorney general basil williams
is this not terrorism by FATF & CFATTF? you dont have to answer that. back to the consultations
as evidenced above i took a lot of notes. they gave out free paper in the manilla envelope but i prefer to make my notes on the bill and the info and shiz was flowing. i’ll just reprint what i wrote as the attorney general and a few other folks talked
i later checked out a few news outlets and read the papers to see what they had to say about the consultations
to rely on them to understand what really took place at this so-called consultation you will be led down a dark alley
…they want to see back their language in your legislation….this is not an easy bill to read then the voluminous nature of it…guyana has been cited for not having these laws since 2011….this particular regieme in the light of paris, san bernadino, boko haram, mali…everything is focused on anti-terrorism – basil williams [he also spoke about being in paris a week before recent explosions there for some meeting. the guyana delegation left before the explosions and he said were regularly in one of the areas attacked]
in between williams talking you got to ask questions
this is based on the time i was there. i left after about an hour and a half as my questions were being taken lightly and the thing seem to be descending into a gabb fest or a junior intellectual jamboree
my first question
what is the purposes of this consultation if these laws are being imposed on guyana. why don’t the govt just say that the americans or whoever are forcing us to do this and stop wasting time? why isnt it on the parliament website? i tried to access it there and notice all other bills were there but not this one.
i cant remember what was said and i didnt take notes of the answer but it was unconvinving. also no mention of why it was not on www.parliament.gov.gy but the ag said in the future all bills and proposed bills will be posted on the ministry of legal afffairs website http://legalaffairs.gov.gy/
a strange comment coming from the attorney general
FIU (financial intelligence unit) have to put into writing what are the requirements what are the requirements that they are falling short on to the govt.
last i checked, the FIU was part of the operations of the guyana govt. but never mind that
norman mclean made a few statements on behalf of the private sector commission. i’ve always felt that this group is one of the most useless, criminally bent in Guyana so i wont quote or remember anything from them.
was this bill drafted in guyana? what latitude we have in ammending, changing? gerry gouveia
the chief parliamentary counsel sitting at the head table answered this one. he is the guy sitting left to basil williams in photo above
similar bills are on the books in jamaica, trinidad and other caribbean territories. we took a draft from jamaica. we are not tied down by any provision…we modified the bill to suit the guyana situation [whatever that is] …it can be truly said this is a guyana bill [just as potatoes fried at demico is french fries]
note this guy is contradicting what basil williams said earlier. i found him to be a bit arrogant and over the top. maybe that’s just me. williams did mention that he was the best and most experienced constitutional lawyer in the caribbean. so maybe so
this bill was around since 2011 and have to pass the test – basil williams
a woman sitting at the head table to basil williams right went on to say that they white man has specific things they want to see in this bill.
i asked a follow up whether they did not see that they are contradicting each other. no proper response. i followed up by asking where did the bill come from, who wrote it?
a lot more waffling and long talk about nothing
i was beginning to drift off into another realm
a guy opposite me name charles thom from upper berbice river wanted to know if he protested and block the road if the would be tried as a terrorist. mentioned the bogus charge instituted against the former soldiers from timehri for treason.
the attorney general assured charles thom that he had nothing to worry about “protesters are safe”
nowhere in the bill defines terrorism, but page 17 tells you what is a terrorist act
(a) an act whether committed in or outside of Guyana which causes or likely to cause –
(i) loss of human life or serious bodily harm
i wrote down couple questions and tried again when the microphone became free
under terrorist act item one is loss of human life or bodily harm. can agencies of the state or agents of the state be charged with terrorism?
also the parliamentary counsel and the lady to the right of the attorney general are saying different things. he said he used a draft from jamaica, but she is saying the people have exact things that they are looking for. which is it? who wrote this bill really? where did it come from?
attorney general gave a flippant answer but says a coroners inquest bill is on the way to expand who can conduct an inquest and other bills to come will deal with police acts against the citizens and kilings during the phantom period.
i clarified that i was not talking about historic crimes in guyana. i simply wanted to know if an agent of the guyana govt or a police officer can be charged with terrorism.
the attorney general then said you would have to prove intent, state of mind, religious beliefs and a set of other ridiculous shit. i was pleasantly surprised that none of the legal luminaries at the head table pontificating about this terrorism bill could say definitively if an officer of the state could be charged with terrorist activities
the crime chief sitting opposite me stared at me with a curious half smile on his face
going back and forth i realised this was going nowhere. i folded up my notes and tucked it into my manilla envelope
i picked up my things and headed out the door as the ag and mr rutherford were hashing it out over what was and wasnt radio active and nuclear material…you got nuclear matierals? … no no no …. colombite, tantalite cause substantive damage to property or environment…
no one has been arrested, charged or even called in for the 23 years of ppp terror and we are busy waxing poetic about san bernadino and hurtling over the cliff to make sure the white man get what he has asked for.
in the mean while, victims of real terror right here in guyana cant get no friggin justice in the kangaroo courts of this land.
victims of guyana police terror
victims of customs and narcotics unit terror
victims of guyana revenue authority terror
guyana water inc, guyana power and light and all the rest
these victims are conveniently forgotten as we busying we’self to please the white man
that my friends is terrorism
by the time you digest all this properly, basil williams and delegation will be packing their bags and rushing off to panama
here’s some more guyana terrorism news. do you know, you can be jailed for three years if a guyana police officer finds a marijuana seed or joint in your possession ? check out the law books or head on down to your local kangaroo court and witness the terroristic acts of magistrates, prosecutors and other agents of the state
as of this writing, this anti-terrorism bill is still not posted on the website of parliament or the ministry of legal affairs