“Do not pay any attention to these hypocrites who are now critical of the introduction of biometrics; its use was raised at the time of the staging Cricket World Cup 2007 in the Caribbean.”
This was Prime Minister Freundel Stuart’s response to critics of his Government’s plan to introduce fingerprinting at ports of entry for all persons leaving and entering, with the exception of children under the age of 16 and diplomats.
It was originally scheduled to take effect on April 1 but had to be delayed on account of legal and other challenges.
Taking a swipe at the Opposition Barbados Labour Party (BLP),which was among those criticizing the plan, Stuart said fingerprinting at ports of entry was considered for the Cricket World Cup by BLP policymakers who were seeking to tighten security at a time when many tourists would be visiting the region.
Addressing the monthly meeting of his St Michael South branch of the Democratic Labour Party at the Bay Primary School, Bayland, St Michael, the Prime Minister repeated his argument first voiced in the House of Assembly last month that a person could falsify his birth certicate and his national identification card, but he could not falsify his fingerprint.
He told his audience that the level of fraud was recently drawn to his attention when he attended a meeting which looked at the falsification of National Identification Cards and other identification material.
Stuart said there were cases where members of the criminal underworld accessed as many as three identification cards so they could engage in their nefarious acts.
The Prime Minister also stressed that a criminal who had slipped through security at the Grantley Adams International Airport was nabbed at a Canadian airport when he gave his fingerprints to immigration officials there.