Prime Minister Mia Mottley is confident that Attorney General Dale Marshall and Minister of State with responsibility for Crime Prevention Corey Lane are the best men to take on the job of dealing with the crime situation on the island.
Speaking to members of the media moments after Lane was sworn in by President The Most Honourable Dame Sandra Mason at Government House on Wednesday afternoon, the Prime Minister, who was flanked by both men said: “I truly believe that between these two gentlemen on both my left and right that they can unlock the potential of this country to win this battle from a community and social perspective and similarly from a law enforcement perspective.
“I genuinely believe that the appointment of Minister Lane as Minister of State in the Office of the Attorney General will allow us to do some things that we wanted to do with respect to ensuring that we attack crime not just as a law enforcement matter but to have greater coordination.”
The Prime Minister said Lane’s expertise would allow Government to tackle crime in a more holistic way.
She said the youth and social activist, who entered elective politics ahead of the January 2022 polls and won The City of Bridgetown seat, would reach out to young people and communities across the country to encourage behavioural change.
In his first speech as a minister, Lane, who was accompanied to the ceremony with his wife Latoya, explained what his role would be in the effort to bring the crime situation under control.
“There seems to be a lot of misunderstanding about what the role is about, but if you think about it there are many things happening in the Government, there are many things happening in civil society and the Third Sector that require coordination. There are also a lot of things that need to be done and that require action.
“My role is really to coordinate and to bring action to those things that are not happening that speak directly to crime prevention in the short, medium and long term, and that is what I am about to roll up my sleeve and get down to from today,” Lane said.
He said his years as a community activist would serve him well in his new capacity.
“When people talk about qualifications, I don’t even want them to think about my Honorary Degree in Sociology. I want them to think of the 24 years of experience working in this society, understanding the society. I want them to think of the four years and three months working in the prison and having great success there as well,” Minister Lane said.
“Even in terms of HIV, the programmes that I brought . . . in the early stages, people did not think they were HIV programmes because they didn’t have a red ribbon, but it was really about behaviour change and, as the Prime Minister said, this is about behaviour change. So, I believe that with the experience it puts me in a great position to be able to move the needle on crime in Barbados.”