President Ali pledges swift justice for slain teens

-assures families of support

Georgetown, Guyana – (September 7, 2020) His Excellency Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali, today, assured the families of slain West Coast Berbice teenagers Masters Isaiah and Joel Henry that he will work with law enforcement to ensure that the perpetrators are brought to swift justice.

The President made this commitment to the families, during a telephone call, this morning, to Mr. Gladston Henry, the father of Master Isaiah Henry and Ms. Gail Johnson, the mother of Master Joel Henry, to express his condolences.

“This morning, I had the unfortunate task of speaking with the father of Isaiah and the mother of Joel. It is unfortunate because of the tragic way that these young men met their death. On behalf of the people of Guyana and my own behalf and that of my family and Government, I express our condolences to the family, to the parents,” President Ali said.

The President said the murders are particularly heinous and reiterated his Government’s commitment to bring those responsible to justice.

“I assure you that as President, I will work very, very hard to ensure those criminals are brought to justice…. We have to work on ensuring that crimes like these do not reoccur,” President Ali said.

The President also called on the nation, and Berbicians in particular, to stand in solidarity during this tragic time and to offer their support to the teenagers’ grieving parents, relatives and community.

“I want to ask all Guyanese not to use this moment to divide us or to separate us, but for us to be conscious of the implications that our statements, comments and posts can have, especially on social media… I can tell you the parents of these two young men are sincere; they are humble people, and as they go through this moment of loss, as they grieve in these moments, communities from which these young men came… what we can do as a people, as a country, as Guyanese is to strengthen our resolve, strengthen our commitment, strengthen our sense of purpose to our communities, to our neighbours, to our friends, to each other in ensuring that our society… our communities do not have to go through these painful moments,” President Ali said.

The President also called on the public to exercise patience and to allow the Guyana Police Force to conduct their investigations.

“I ask that you give them an opportunity to complete their work, to support them as they seek to aggressively bring the perpetrators to justice; that whatever we do in demonstrating our emotions, I appeal to you to do so in a peaceful manner, to do so in a respectful manner, to do so in a lawful manner,” President Ali said.