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Warner at launch of Drug Treatment Court project: I’m not stepping down
National Security Minister Jack Warner took a jab at his detractors yesterday, making it clear he had no intention of stepping down. Speaking at the Drug Treatment Court pilot project launch at City Hall Auditorium, San Fernando, he also vowed not to give up on Laventille. Warner added: “Many in the nation may be beginning to lose patience with Laventille. Many in the nation may be wishing the problem of Laventille will simply burn itself out beyond the pale of significance.
“There are those in this country who clap their hands with glee for each murder that takes place in the country, hoping no doubt that each murder will be a chink in the armour of the People’s Partnership Government. “There are those who even believe the more strident and vociferous their baseless cries are for the removal of Jack Warner, the easier it will become for their drug lords and friends in the underworld.”
But, he said, the Government was a responsible one and was here for the long haul. “And, more importantly, thank God, so too is the Minister of National Security,” he added. He said the Government must find ways to help the people of Laventille live normal lives once again and help prison inmates improve their education and qualifications and outfit them with life skills. He said the pilot project signified a modern approach.
He said if the Government reduced the annual prison bill of $400 million it must help offenders turn their lives around. He said drug offences accounted for half of the 3,400 prison population which represented roughly 2.5 per cent of the overall population. Chief Justice Ivor Archie said the project was one out of three which would be rolled out in six months. The others would be in Tunapuna and Port-of-Spain and other courts would be established as the project developed.
Archie said the court would not only result in savings to the judiciary, Prison Service and other state agencies but more importantly it allowed addicts to access services under the umbrella of the court and equip them for a productive life and healthy relationships.
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