!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN"> Letter from the Wife of a Detainee
The Grenada Revolution Online

Example of a Letter from the Wife of a Detainee


NOTE: The letter below 'From the Wife of a Detainee' was printed in a 24 October 1980 Trinidadian newspaper.


St. George's, Grenada
September 1980
To Whom It May Concern
From the Wife of a Detainee

It is not possible for me to sign this letter, as it would be in the interest of all concerned for me to remain anonymous so as to prevent further victimisation.

Although Grenada is referred to now as 'Free Grenada', speech and actions of some of the people are completely curtailed an dour human rights totally ignored.

Since March 13th, 1979, my husband together with others were detained by The People's Revolutionary Government.

Up to March this year [1980] a few were released and there are still about 48 who were detained since March 13, 1979 still in prison of which my husband is one of them.

Following are some of the undisputable facts:--

As a result of the Revolution and a change of Government my post was terminated and since then I have been unemployed except for a part time job as a maid, which is about the only type of occupation which is available.

Some other wives of detainees were also relieved of their jobs.

As a result, it was impossible to upkeep my children at school and now the eldest, age 14, is trying to teach the other five at home.

My husband has had no income since March 13, 1979 and the very meagre wages I earn it is simply impossible to continue life.

Our monetary commitments remain untouched and it is still a miracle to me that we are not yet thrown out of our house.

Words cannot express my present plight and is left only to your vivid imagination hence my reason for writing so that some sort of solution could be arrived at for we cannot get any response from the authorities concerned.

After March 1979 we were permitted to visit the detainees at the prison up to August 1979.

After that time, visiting rights ceased and were re-instated at the end of 1979.

From May this year [1980] all visits ceased and to date we are still not permitted to visit our husbands.

However, I am assured that my husband is still alive.

No legal charges have been laid against them and it is almost 18 months that they are in prison under very strained and dangerous conditions as can be expected, although there is a little more space as persons serving sentences were paroled.

A prison doctor visits them weekly and ill ones do not get proper medical attention.

In 1979 the People's Revolutionary Government appointed a three member Tribunal Committee for hearings from the detainees.

There were three such hearings and files were passed on to the Prime Minister who we understand would peruse and make a final decision.

No word has ever been heard about this and this committee no longer functions.

A Visitation Committee was also formed, but his has since been cancelled.

The Grenada Council of Churches took an active interest in the welfare of the detainees soon after the Revolution and through their instrumentality I was able to visit my husband last Boxing Day.

The Council also had many meetings with Government and no solution was arrived at.

The Prime Minister himself stated that he could not release these men as they will pose a threat to security.

No recent meeting was held but the Church Ministers visit the prison also the detainees.

It is regrettable to state that it seems now that these detainees are forgotten in jail and there are even people in Grenada who do not know they are still held in custody.

In 'Free Grenada' it can always be heard on Radio Free Grenada how the Government is very interested in human rights and how these privileges are now restored but they are preaching one thing and practising another.

As it stands at the moment, there is no one here to plead our cause hence my reason for appealing to you in great humility to help us in some way through your various organisations.

Please intercede for us and then and only then we all would be free.

Thanking you most sincerely.

I remain yours truly


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