In defence of Dwight Nelson
THE EDITOR, Sir:
I HAVE been reading with concern the many objections to the National Security Minister Dwight Nelson's statement regarding the granting of bail to suspected kidnappers. While I note that the alleged kidnappers were granted bail for significant sums, this is little comfort to the victim's family. In my opinion, kidnapping is a horri-fic crime, akin to murder. It is the threat to life against the extortion of money, a threat when fulfilled is tantamount to an act of terrorism.
It involves access, vehicle(s), weapons, a holding station, communications, and often mirrors an orga-nised approach by a group of persons for monetary (or political) gain.
Every conscientious parent views this crime with fear: fear for his child's life, the child's welfare and fear of psychological repercussions.
Trinidad and Tobago ranks second behind Colombia in South America and the Caribbean in kidnapping. It has been suspected that a Muslim group that might be linked to al-Qaida was behind some of the kidnappings in the twin-island republic, and this encourages amateur crooks to be inspired by the ransoms collec-ted. Success in collecting ransoms could increase kidnapping attempts. If this is allowed to proliferate in Jamaica, it will only add to the serious crime problem. It must be nipped in the bud lest many more people be affected by this crime. A quotation from a Trinidadian journal says: "Kidnapping in Trinidad has become ridiculous. How is Sally's family supposed to live their lives not knowing if their daughter is dead or alive? It is impossible to move on." I think that Minister Nelson's comments must be given serious support and consideration.
I am, etc.,
Ramesh K. Sujanani