For all the air-conditioned, carpeted comfort of the Parliament, certain residue of Tropical Storm Bret found its way into the Chamber yesterday.
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I’ll defend Muslim women with my life—Bakr
On the eve of the 24th anniversary of the 1990 attempted coup, the man who led that insurrection, Jamaat al Muslimeen leader Yasin Abu Bakr said the detention of women during a raid on its mosque at Carapo on Tuesday, during the holy month of Ramadan, has brought back a feeling of deja vu. Speaking on the i95.5FM yesterday, Bakr said, “for the last couple of months there has been constant persecution of the people of Carapo and it has to stop.”
He said for years they have been persecuted but the unabated injustices topped off by the detention of female members during a raid at the Carapo mosque was just too much. Bakr said the State as well as Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley and MP Colm Imbert have exacerbated the situation with their continued focus on his members, including detainee Rajaee Ali who has been fingered in the now disbanded Life Sport programme and his encounters with the law.
“It was more than that in 1990 and that is why I say that it’s deja vu. It’s building it back up. The State has arrested these women while they were praying, leaving children unattended. That cannot be accepted. That is not acceptable behaviour. He questioned the basis for the detention of the women, who were among 18 arrested during the raid and kept at the La Horquetta and Arima police stations.
“You cannot just detain women arbitrarily and at the end justify that they inquiring into some kind of kidnapping. What the women have to do with kidnapping and this is where I come to position. And this is why I have arrived at this situation because this is what has been happening before 1990.” He said he would give his life to protect women, Muslim or non-Muslim, because others have abdicated their role to protect women.
Bakr also chastised Griffith who talked about stamping out cockroaches and Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar for her unleashing the dogs of war statement. “How could the Minister of National Security call citizens cockroaches? How could the PM be unleashing dogs of war?” Told by one of the interviewers that his statement might be perceived as a threat, Bakr responded, “They have a Dog Act. Men shooting dogs who attacking them and that is within the law.
“The PM say she unleash the dogs and if the dogs every night in Carapo, when they say if dogs attacking you, you shoot the dogs. The law says if a dog attack you, you shoot it. Anand Ramlogan (Attorney General) and them pass that law in Parliament.”