Prominent religious leader Senator David Durant is describing the shooting incidents which marred this year’s Grand Kadooment as outrageous, irresponsible and obnoxious.
Senator Durant told The Barbados Advocate yesterday that he was aggrieved at the fact that over 20 people, who attended the final and biggest event for the 2017 Crop Over festival, were injured as a result of gun related violence.
He said he was displeased with the inconsiderate actions of those who carried out the unlawful acts, declaring that “if we do not watch ourselves it will have a serious impact on our vital tourism industry”.
Furthermore, Durant suggested that the nation as a whole cannot sit back and allow the situation to be dragged where “we reach to the point of negative publicity where people will be warned not to come to Barbados eventually”.
“We don’t want that to happen. I must say, I applaud the Royal Barbados Police Force (RBPF) for the work that they are doing. These men and women are doing a very good job out there, but we have got to assist them,” he said.
He insisted that while the members of the Force are working hard to keep Barbados as a safe destination, members of the public must lend a helping hand to the effort.
“I am calling on the public to be more responsible. What you know, make sure you say to the Police. You can do it anonymously. Barbados is too small for these things to be hidden.
“Some of these guys are carrying guns that are too large even to be hidden in the homes where they are living. We got to speak out for the betterment of our land,” an upset Durant said.
“We are in this island together and we have to stand together and protect this it. We cannot allow this kind of deviance to continue and turn a blind eye to it and bury our heads in the sand. The next victim can be your family, you never can tell,” he added.
The Senator said he hopes that those responsible for bringing the illegal weapons into the country are mindful that they are also to be blamed for every life that is injured or taken senselessly.
“They are just as responsible. The mere fact that they are importing these things and selling or renting them to these youngsters, they are just as guilty of the murder or the injury to an individual or to their families.
“My thing is, the guns are coming into the country and they are not manufactured here. How are they coming into the country? It clearly means that our borders need a lot more protection and even our airport and sea port need a lot more security and very careful attention being given to them,” he said.