incompetence, interference, and injustice: this is how rape gets dealt with in guyana

so tired. spent hours today going back and forth between magistrate’s court and police station. this is the station where they lit that teenage boy’s genitals on fire in 2009 so i was a bit scared to go in. but we were determined to get to the bottom of the bullshit, so there was where we had to go..

case file incomplete since december. time passing and case (rape) will most likely get discharged 2moro. police prosecutor (who we’ve heard is related to the perpetrator) seh is nah he to blame, is the CID detectives not doing their work properly. CID inspector deny deny deny (one thing i doan tolerate is rape story, allahuakbar!) and toss the buck back. definitely some bucks being caught somewhere, that’s for sure. incompetence and interference: the hallmarks of the police and judicial system in guyana today, nevermind what the big ones tell you in their air conditioned offices in georgetown.

don’t try and wear a jeans into the courtroom (well women only; men can pass)- dem community policewomen gon be at your throat. o lovely guyana- if only all your laws were as strictly enforced as the nonsensical dress codes! it’s worth mentioning tho, that the policemen pants more tight than anything i see any of the women wearing. and apparently you can wear a jeans skirt that show more skin than a denim pants covering 100%. see, this shit makes no sense but that is what they focus on and enforce more strictly than anything else.

while rapists walk free and rape victims struggle to carry on. he comes by her workplace and stares her down. from the beginning, the first time she went to the police, she heard the matter wasn’t going to go anywhere. she drank 10 pills on sunday last. they were antibiotics tho, so didn’t do her anything, she said, with a tremulous laugh. rapist’s girlfriend and auntie in court by his side. yea, women are complicit in patriarchy too.

meanwhile, her mother says- cover yourself in the blood of jesus and have faith! magistrate says her hands are tied; she know more is needed but she’s limited by the law. asks us if we can help counsel the gay teenager who got caught stealing because his father put him out. she doesn’t want to send him to noc because she’s seen from the others who she’s sent there that it doesn’t help. send them, we say. we don’t tell her that there has been no funding for months, that the center is running on fumes.  “do the churches, mosques, mandirs have any counseling programs?” she, the magistrate, asks us.

my head pounds. i have to come home and lie down. before i explode.

i don’t make it to read with the children.

we have to go back tomorrow morning.

in the afternoon, we bury courtney.

but guyanese happy, rohee says. i dream of smashing his face with my fist.


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