?Tobago House of Assembly Chief Secretary, Orville London, has condemned the slaying of two Tobago youths over the weekend. The bodies of Kolen Salandy, 16, and 15-year-old Rondell Thomas, of Signal Hill, were discovered bearing stab wounds at French Fort. London described the act as barbaric and called for swift justice. He was, at the time, addressing the media, after Eid ul-Fitr celebrations at the Tobago Masjid at Lowlands on Sunday.
He said: "Any violent crime has to be condemned, but when you have crimes against the very young, that is barbarous, and it should be condemned in the strongest manner." London said crimes of this manner "cannot be tolerated" by Tobagonians. The THA Chief Secretary said the murders of Salandy and Thomas shocked Tobago, and had affected the sister island in a way that very few things had affected the island in a long time. London said now was the time for introspection by all nationals to look at ways they could act to prevent such crimes from recurring.
London said the THA would take a pro-active approach to deal with the situation. The THA planned to work with the police and offer counselling through its Division of Education, Youth Affairs and Sport, to the relatives and friends of the deceased. London said the crime had personally shocked him, and noted that no parent should have to bury their child under such circumstances. In his greetings to the Tobago Muslim community, London pledged the continued support of the THA to the Muslims and urged them to work towards the building of Tobago.
Imam Sharif Akalwaya, head of the Tobago Masjid, in his Eid greetings, told Tobago's Muslim community to remember the lessons of Ramadan. Akalwaya said the recently-concluded month of fasting was meant to be an occasion when the faithful renewed their resolve to worship God. "It has become incumbent upon us to consider the reality of worship and its internal impact on us, and not its outward forms."