Police Commissioner Gary Griffith

Police Commissioner Gary Griffith has condemned what he calls “petty politics” for the failure of the Anti-Gang Amendment Bill in the House of Representatives.

Griffith told Guardian Media, “Unfortunately petty politics, yet again, takes precedence over doing what is right for the country. We just arrested a major person of interest involved in gang activity….over 70 in the last few years. It was a major deterrent that contributed to over 115 less murders this year compared to the same period last year. It seems that this Bill was an issue for some politicians.”

He added, “Heaven forbid, if and when gang-related murders increase, I hope that those who rejected the Bill would be prepared to answer to their God and the citizens of this country.”

A vote on the bill in the House of Representatives today ended with 20 in favour – all Government MPs present, none objecting and 19 Opposition MPs abstaining.

The bill required a three-fifths majority of the House, with is 25 MPs.

It now means that the Anti-Gang legislation will no longer be law from November 29, 2020.

The last bill was passed in 2018 with a sunset clause. The bill before Parliament today had a clause stating, “This Act shall continue in force for a period of 30 months from the 29th day of November 2020.”