PRESS RELEASE PNCR STRONGLY CONDEMNS SEARCH OF MR. JEROME KHAN MP RESIDENCE People’s National Congress Reform Congress Place, Sophia Georgetown, Guyana Thursday, April 12, 2006
The PNCR strongly condemns the early morning search conducted by the joint services on the residence of PNCR Central Executive Member and Parliamentarian Mr. Jerome Khan on Monday April 10, 2006.
This is an unprecedented act by the joint services and has the dubious distinction of being the first time such an action has been undertaken against a sitting Member of Parliament.
Aside from being an MP, Mr. Khan is also a highly respected member of the business community and the actions of the joint services could lead to irreparable harm to his business and high social standing in our community.
While the PNCR notes that the Commissioner of Police has expressed regrets at the search and has stated that it was conducted at the wrong location the PNCR cannot accept this explanation as a mere faux pas.
Units of the joint services were encamped in Bel Air Gardens immediately in front of Mr. Khan’s residence for over 2 weeks. They ought to have had first hand information on all the residences in and around the location of their encampment, and therefore ought to have known that 21 Bel Air Gardens was Mr. Khan’s residence.
Moreover, it is reasonable to presume that prior to their early morning search they would have done recognizance work and such work would have further confirmed that the selected target was the residence of a PNCR MP.
The leadership of the Guyana Defence Force (GDF) and the Guyana Police Force (GPF) must now immediately explain how there could have been such a breakdown within their own intelligence network. They must question their own people who are entrusted with sifting through information which leads to the classification as intelligence.
If Mr. Jerome Khan was perceived as a suspect, then the same could also hold true for all the top brass of the GDF who daily work within the GDF compound and who have inner access to GDF weaponry on a daily basis.
Moreover, this raid on the residence of Mr. Jerome Khan has other far reaching political implications and the PNCR believes that it is designed to drive fear into the Indo Guyanese segment of our community who are supportive of the PNCR.
Is this search intended to send a message to the Indo Guyanese population at large that if they join, associate or support the PNCR they can expect this kind of unwarranted and unfounded personal attack?
Mr. Jerome Khan has been a strident critic of the ruling party, of drug lords and money laundering. He is on record as having dubbed the 2005 Annual Budget as based on Voodoo economics as it may have included in its revenue section the proceeds of crime.
Following that presentation the current Minister of Home Affairs Gail Texeira wrote a letter to Mr. Khan requesting that he provide names of persons he thinks may be drug lords. This request was rejected as Mr Khan believed that this was an attempt to set him up as a potential target, now this fear has been actualized by an early morning raid.
The GDF must also explain if it is true that a senior officer of the GDF is collaborating and has collaborated with named drug trafficker Roger Khan, a person who is not even remotely related to Mr Jerome Khan, as was stated in a recent public advertisement.
The PNCR while commending the Khan family for cooperating fully with the security forces in their futile search considers this a dangerous development and therefore calls on the leadership of the GDF and GPF to immediately issue a formal written apology to Mr Khan, his wife, children and members of his family.
People’s National Congress Reform
Congress Place, Sophia
Thursday, April 12, 2006
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