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Low turnout at CCM’s picket

Low turnout at CCM’s picket


Social and political activist Robert “Patches” Knights is not surprised that Vincentians did not show up for the picket against violence, planned for Monday, December 12, in front the Financial Complex, Kingstown.{{more}}

Organized by a group calling itself the Concerned Citizens Movement (CCM), the picket had as its objective to protest what the movement described in a press release as “the recent upsurge of crime and violence in our society” and was scheduled to commence at 11:00 am on Monday.

However, upon arrival at Bay Street, SEARCHLIGHT observed a number of placards on the ground, but no one to hold them.

Knights, holding a placard that read “Oh Gawd, too much Rape”, was the only person on the picket line.

Patches, as he is commonly known, told SEARCHLIGHT that he felt that some persons were scared to be a part of the organized picket by the Concerned Citizens Movement, while the majority just didn’t want to participate.

“There are a number of people in their comfort zone, including the New Democratic Party supporters and people who are directly affected by the crime in the country. It seems that their comfort is Christmas time and people rather go in the stores and buy stuff to beautify their homes … than to get involved.

“The possibilities of being arrested are also in people’s mind, but I am not afraid of that. People will not come out for various reasons and of course, those that support the ULP will not come out because they are satisfied with the way things are because it benefits them.

“Even though one side of the country is suffering, in this case everyone is affected by the criminal activities. So, I am not surprised,” he stated.

According to Patches, some people are not afraid to come forward. Those are people with more courage and people who will stand up for things they know are right, whereas others may back down for various reasons.

“People who are aligned to the governing party, they do not want any form of protesting, picketing or demonstration, because they feel that is a bad reflection of the governing party.

“So, regardless to what is happening, a number of persons who were directly affected by these criminal activities in this country will not support and participate.”

“On the other hand now, the people on the opposing side, which is the New Democratic Party, they have succumbed to the slant by those guys on the radio station who keep saying this is a NDP project, so therefore, those persons are keeping away from it, including members of the hierarchy of the New Democratic Party, who believe that they don’t want to associate with this because they feel that they will say it is a New Democratic Party thing.

“I support the New Democratic Party and that does not make me less of a citizen, or less affected by the criminal activities. So, whether NDP was in office or not, I believe I would have been here…” he added.

Patches, who is a veteran calypsonian, also stated that he does not want to beat the drum for himself and dance, but he always been a person who is not afraid of the power structure.

“…So, I will be here if I have to, walking up and down with my placard and I am not scared, because as I say, I am not looking for no favour from the political party that is governing the country, and I surely not getting any from the opposition, because they have nothing to give me.

“It’s on a principle I am here, and if we don’t stand up nobody else will,” he further stated.(AA)