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Wife calls for justice

...after witnessing husband’s executionremained
Published: 
Sunday, January 29, 2017
RAMESH JACOB PHOTO: SHASTRI BOODAN

Halima Jacob, 45, screamed until she lost her voice as she cradled the body of her husband, Ramesh “Raj” Jacob, in her arms moments after she witnessed his murder at the side of the road close to Ato Boldon Stadium, Couva, yesterday morning.

“How am I going to see another day without you? Oh baby, I love you,” she cried as undertakers removed the body of the 41-year-old owner of Raj’s Wrecking Service and doubles vendor of Barrackpore.

As she sat on a chair surrounded by relatives, including her two sons who tried to comfort her, the distraught woman recounted in a weak voice that it was 6 am when she and her husband arrived on the spot at Clifford Roach Drive, Balmain, Couva, where they had been selling doubles for the past 17 years.

“My husband only had time to put out two coolers when two of them pull up in a car, the driver and a fellar in the back seat. The car was dark, dark, dark, “ she said in relation to the tint on the windows.

“The fellar in the back seat jump out and this little Indian fellar, he could be my son, he shoot my husband. Oh God, this little Indian fellar let me down. I should not be an Indian again,” she said.

As her relatives tried to dissuade her from talking to the media, she brushed them off and told them to let her speak. “Oh God, them fellars don’t have a mind. They don’t go to church. Oh God, how could you do that to me.”

She said her husband, a deeply religious man, struggled to build the two businesses they operated. She said only the day before he held a prayers at their home. She said in spite of their struggles, she was willing to give up everything in exchange for her husband’s life.

“My husband worked hard to reach where he is, he walked barefoot. We never had clothes, we never had food. When I study those days with this man. If he used to sleep out, I would say I am pleased with my husband’s death, but not this one. Not to witness this. I don’t know what karma we have with these children,” she lamented

Police are working on the theory that this was a hit as nothing was taken. Only recently, several of Jacob’s vehicles were set on fire. Jacob had several contracts with the Police Service to remove vehicles involved in accidents and other crimes. Police reports state the gunman pumped six bullets into Jacob’s upper body, including the first one to his head.

Apart from his wife, a female employee also witnessed the cold-blooded killing. As she sat on the chair just outside the cordoned off area, gazing at the body of her husband lying face up as the DMO and crime scene officers processed the scene, Halima appealed to the Government for justice. She wondered aloud how she would care for her sons, ages 17 and 21, one a student of ASJA College and the other attending the School of Accountancy and Management. The elder son, who did not want to be named or photographed for fear that their father’s killer may come after him, said he had plans to study in Miami later this year, but did not know if that would be realised.

“This is so unfair. Oh God give me justice. Rowley (Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley) ent go see, he happy now to watch poor people where they dey. I have two sons to send to school, you think Rowley go come and see we? What this world come to. My back have a hole, I have kidney surgery, what I go do.” Halima ran to the white panel van removing her husband’s body asking for an opportunity to touch his hands. She was only able to touch the back of the vehicle, screaming “take me too”. She then fainted soon after and had to be revived by relatives using smelling salts and Limacol.

Couva South MP Rudranath Indarsingh, who was on the scene, said people are feeling unsafe because of the high level of crime. He said the time was coming soon when citizens would have to congregate at the Office of the Prime Minister to send a message for the Government to act on crime.

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