The police were alerted by Jamaat al Muslimeen insurgents that they were going to blow up Police Headquarters on the afternoon of July 27, 1990.This was disclosed by Jamaat member Jamaal Shabazz yesterday as he gave evidence before the commission of enquiry into the attempted coup d'etat at the Caribbean Court of Justice in Port-of-Spain, i"The police were alerted. There was ample time, if they followed instructions, to evacuate the building," Shabazz told the commission.He said he found out after the coup the Jamaat had more car bombs which could have had a much more devastating effect but which they did not use.Shabazz told the commission Jamaat leader, Yasin Abu Bakr, was a former police officer and personally knew some senior police officers with whom he kept in contact.
He also said there was a lot of dissension in the ranks of the Police Service prior to the coup attempt.Shabazz said Jamaat members did prior training in the Middle East and with their own paramilitary group, the Guardians of Islam."We trained in the forested heights in Trinidad about two to three months before the coup attempt." he said.Questioned by lead counsel Avory Sinanan he denied he knew where the guns used in the uprising came from or where they were kept.
He said he and some of the "younger brothers" never thought they would have ended up in a long, drawn-out battle with the armed forces."We were told by the Jamaat leadership that the army was in support of us and would not come out and combat us." he added.He said he also believed the Summit of the People's Organisation (SOPO) would support the uprising.He said he felt if they were successful some kind of coalition government would have been set up to govern T&T.