SVG is fast becoming a nation of murders. Killing has spiraled out of control. In 2016, there were 40 murders in SVG. In 2017, murders reached a record high of 42. In that year, SVG had the fourth highest murder rate per capita in the world.
There is simply too much blood running in SVG.
On top of the fact that there are too many murders in SVG, is the fact that so many of those murdered are women, many at the hands of their husbands, common-law husbands or boyfriends.
Recently, we heard about another woman being murdered by her common-law husband.
What the hell is going on in our country? Are we heading for a femicide crisis? Stop killing women!
The country has plummeted to depths of moral and ethical lows. Poor governance has to be blamed for this breakdown of our society and this shows that the ULP regime is one of the worst governments in the Caribbean.
The murder rate in SVG has risen sharply under the ULP regime and the crime epidemic appears to be escalating. The virtual collapse of our economy and the resulting widespread poverty and unemployment in SVG, are significant contributing factors to the high murder rate of women.
A 2014 report by UQAM’s International Clinic for the Defense of Human Rights, in collaboration with SVG’s Human Rights Association, describes there being a ‘cultural epidemic’ in SVG, because of the high levels of violence against women.
The report talks about the ‘grave concern to Vincentian women’, because SVG has one of the world’s highest ratios of rape per inhabitants, and that cultural prejudices against women and the trivialisation of violence within relationships have a devastating effect on women’s rights, particularly their right to be free from violence’.
The report also says, ‘The provisions of the Criminal Code define the crimes of rape and incest in an extremely narrow manner, thereby failing to protect all women and girls. What is even more appalling, is that when the Family Court issues a protection order or an occupation order, enforcement of that order is inadequate, thereby creating a climate of impunity for perpetrators of violence’.
What is wrong with the mentality of the ULP regime, whereby they have just not bothered to resolve these problems during their 20 years in government? The killing of women, the violence against women and the acts of incest against women are clearly too trivial to be dealt with by this regime.
It is more important to the ULP regime to build another port in Kingstown than (to) solve these problems. Rather than focus on this so-called ‘second biggest project of our lifetime’, government should focus on a ‘project to save women’s lives’.
Leader of SVG Green Party, Warrant Officer Ivan Bertie O’Neal BSc (Hons), MSc, MBA, believes SVG needs change. We need a new government with good financial governance and the ability to create a strong economy. Crime will always destroy a country, whereas high-quality education will always build a country.
We cannot continue with the financially irresponsible ULP regime, as the cost to SVG’s women – our sisters, mothers, wives, daughters is too high. Having the fourth highest murder rate per capita in the world is a clear sign that we must alter the deadly path that the ULP regime has set our country upon.
We need change to stop the killing of women. Femicide is not an acceptable consequence of poor governance.