Police story had too many inconsistencies – ‘Freddie’ Kissoon tells Lindo Creek COI
DPI, Guyana, Friday, March 9, 2018
“The police statement on the Lindo Creek massacre just did not make sense to us. There were too many incongruous confrontations within the police explanation of what transpired”, newspaper columnist and social activist Frederick “Freddie” Kissoon recalled as he appeared before the Lindo Creek Commission of Inquiry (COI) today.
Kissoon who was at the time of the massacre attached to the Kaieteur News and wrote several articles on the issue recounted that following the incident he received a message from the newspaper that George Leonard Arokium wanted to speak to him. Arokium’s son Dax, 29, and his brother, Cedric Arokium called Brother, 51 were among the eight persons killed during the massacre which took place on or about June 21, 2008.
Sceptical about the call, Kissoon said he arranged to meet with Arokium Snr., at the headquarters of the Catholic Standard. He recalled that the two spoke for about three hours and that Arokium Snr. brought with him a series of maps and photographs with burnt bodies, ashes and remnants of burnt foodstuff.
Kissoon said that he distinctly recalled Arokium saying that he believed “that it was security forces who killed his son and not the ‘Fineman’ gang” and that they were covering up the matter. He wanted my intervention as a media operative, to tell the truth, Kissoon recounted.
According to Kissoon, Arokium’s stated that it would be impossible for ‘Fineman’ and his gang to get over Christmas Falls, into Lindo Creek, to kill the camp employees. “He laid out the maps and showed me that if you’re at a point and how you would get to the area. I would say it was an extensive meticulous explanation of cartography.”
The columnist said that what has always troubled him was how the government arrived at the conclusion that the ‘Fineman Gang’ committed the massacre. “Someone from the gang gave directions to Bharrat Jagdeo (then President) …” Kissoon recollected, observing that, the said individual, who was one of his students, and “nurturing” the ‘Fineman’ gang, gave information “to get a favour in return from the state.” which, Kissoon claimed, he received.
Asked whether he had considered it important to visit the site of the killing (Lindo Creek), Kissoon explained that he and his colleague, the deceased Dale Andrews, made several attempts to get into the area, but geographically, it was impossible. “It would have been an advantage, but it would not have led me to any other conclusion that I would arrive at,” Kissoon said, reiterating his belief that the massacre was carried out by someone other than the ‘Fineman Gang.’
By: Synieka Thorne