It was not what the father of Andrea Bharatt and the country were hoping for.
Everyone wanted answers on what led to the death of the 23-year-old clerk. But the autopsy done on the young woman’s body yesterday was inconclusive, providing no answers on Andrea’s final moments.
Across the country, there has been a lobby for justice for Andrea – her death coming as it did just barely a month after the murder of Ashanti Riley. No one knows for sure what would have happened in her final moments. The only hope was the autopsy.
Coupled with that, yesterday came word that a key suspect in her kidnapping had died.
Police said the suspect, Joel Balcon, died at the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex. Nurses found him unresponsive and an attempt to resuscitate him proved futile.
While some see it as poetic justice, the fact is that the country and Andrea’s relatives must have “patience,” according to the Police Commissioner to see what this second death means for this case.
It would be a travesty of justice if it falls apart and Andrea’s relatives get no answers on what happened.
It cannot be enough to know that her lifeless body was found over a cliff in the Heights of Aripo.
Her life meant much more. Her family needs closure. They need justice as do the many families whose loved ones disappeared and cannot be found, or whose bones may have been found in the Heights of Aripo following the discovery of Andrea’s body.
The country has rallied in a unifying call for justice for women who have been victims of crime this past week.
Andrea’s death meant something to everyone.
It was a wake-up call to action.
Citizens across the length and breadth of this country lit candles in vigils demanding justice and an end to crimes against women.
Sadly, politicians on both sides continue to misread the mood of the population and behave as though all is well in Trinidad and Tobago.
For the record, it is not.
Last week Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi attempted to play politics with the matter in the Parliament declaring “you see Madame speaker it is all well and good to pick up a candle and hold a vigil.”
He dismissed the tears of mothers and others who joined the protests as “crocodile tears on a pavement” saying it does nothing to help.
While his comments may have been targeted at the Opposition the fact is they touched everyone who participated in those vigils. Human lives matter and the people are demanding that the politicians elected by them do what is required to protect all of us.
It is all that the people have.
The only way they know to get those who they elected to do their business.
It is exactly because the politicians don’t get it that some nameless individual could publish a sex offenders registry under the banner ‘My Trini Experience’. Why is there no public sex registry?
The AG, Minister of National Security, the Prime Minister, and the entire Cabinet must understand that Trinidad and Tobago have had enough of the crime.
It is time that they get serious about fixing the problems which plague the criminal justice system. Those elected by the people must stop playing politics with everything.
No, Mr AG, it is not crocodile tears.
To quote the relatives of Andrea, “The nation is hurt and crying, and you see it as crocodile tears. Is it our pain you’re making a mockery of?”
Come on AG, you can do better than that.