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Request for Official Declaration of State of Emergency in SVG

12 September 2017

 


His Excellency Sir Frederick Ballantyne
Governor General of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
Government House
Kingstown
St. Vincent and the Grenadines


Your Excellency,

Re: Official Declaration of State of Emergency in SVG

I, Warrant Officer Ivan O’Neal BSc (hons) MSc, MBA and Leader of SVG Green Party, write to say that Saint Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) has fallen in to a state of social calamity and requires international aid.

Last year SVG had 40 murders, making it one of the top 10 most murderous countries in the world. On top of that, in recent weeks SVG has seen an explosion in bloody violent crime.

A woman was set alight and died from her burns; a young woman was killed in a frenzied knife attack; a woman was stabbed several times by a man in Richland Park and died from her injuries; two brothers in East Kingstown area were gunned down; and, a young man was gun down in Kingstown recently.

SVG is swamped with bloody violent crime and there seems to be no end to this social calamity.

For the sake of our country, I request that Your Excellency announces a Declaration of 21 days of a State of Emergency, in accordance with the SVG 1979 Constitution Section 17, sub-section (2), sub-section (b) and take appropriate actions to rescue our people and country from this social calamity of bloody violent crime.

Section 17 of the SVG 1979 constitution states:
(2) A proclamation under this section shall not be effective unless it contains a declaration that the Governor-General is satisfied-
a. that a public emergency has arisen as a result to the imminence of a state of war between Saint Vincent and a foreign state;
b. that a public emergency has arisen as a result of the occurrence of any volcanic eruption, earthquake, hurricane, flood, fire, outbreak of pestilence or of infectious disease, or other calamity whether similar to the foregoing or not; in the public interest; or,
A public emergency has arisen as a result of the explosion of bloody violent crime. If not checked and contained, this situation could spiral further out of control and threaten our people on an extensive scale and endanger the public safety.

We urgently need you to announce a Declaration of 21 days of a State of Emergency, in accordance with the SVG 1979 Constitution Section 17, sub-section (2), sub-section (b), to give our country the legal authority to ask the international community, such as the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, European Union, United Kingdom and the Organisation of American States, for aid and intervention.

SVG needs food aid as many thousands of households have no income and no food and rely on other relatives for meagre food supplies.

SVG needs water aid as many households have no mains water. International agencies could help set up the infrastructure for hundreds of water standpipes around the country to provide free water. This will help prevent an outbreak of cholera and other water-borne diseases.

SVG needs United Nations peacekeeping troops to intervene and help the local law enforcement agencies to eradicate the out-of-control gun crime. This happened in Haiti in 2007 and helped bring peace and civil security. SVG needs also the UNODC Global Firearms Programme at work in our country.

SVG needs financial aid and technical assistance to set up three industrial sectors. SVG needs help to set up:

• a tuna fishing and canning industry;
• factories for agro-processing to export fruit juices;
• the infrastructure and a factory to export surplus fresh drinking water in tanker-loads.

These industries would create work for thousands of unemployed, low-skilled workers in SVG. This will in turn provide a financial income and more food security to the many thousands of poor households and reduce crime.

It would be quite foolish to sit back and do nothing and hope the bloody violent crime in SVG will just go away by itself. Please announce a Declaration of 21 days of a State of Emergency, in accordance with the SVG 1979 Constitution section 17, sub-section (2), sub-section (b) and bring in international assistance immediately.

Yours faithfully

 

Warrant Officer Ivan O’Neal BSc (hons) MSc, MBA
Leader of SVG Green Party

CC: SVG Minister of National Security

SVG Attorney General
Leader of the Opposition in SVG

Secretary General of United Nations
President of World Bank

President of IMF
President of EU

Prime Minister of UK
Secretary General of OAS

Secretary General of CARICOM
World Health Organisation

Media

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