No school funeral for Sandman

The funeral service for Vaughn “Sand­man” Mieres and his wife Ali­ka “Let­ty” De­here can not be held at the Las Cuevas Gov­ern­ment Pri­ma­ry School, Minister of Education Anthony Garcia confirmed on Wednesday.

On Tues­day a dig­i­tal fly­er be­gan cir­cu­lat­ing on so­cial me­dia an­nounc­ing the fu­ner­al ser­vice for Mieres and his wife would be held at the school on Friday.

The Minister explained that no funeral have ever been held in schools around the country, and this service would not be the one to set a precedent.

"Well, I can say most definitely now that that the school will not be used to facilitate the housing of the funeral services.

Yesterday when I got the information I did not at that time have any relevant information but today when I checked with our director of school supervision, he told me that a request has been made through the principal of the school to his line supervision asking for permission and as you know there is process we must follow and that process would involve the line supervisor getting in contact with the director of school supervision and then it goes to the chief education officer who ultimately has the responsibility to make that decision," said Minister Garcia outside the Parliament chamber entrance on Wrightson road yesterday.

"That decision will not allow the funeral services to be held at the school simply because in all the history of our school's operations no funeral has ever been held in any of our schools whether it is a denominational school or whether it is a government school," said Garcia.

Mieres and his wife were murdered last week alongside two of his bodyguards Thursday when gunmen stormed his Las Cuevas home.

Mieres was reputed to be a gang leader with considerable influence along the North Coast of Trinidad.

The Minister could not explain why the school was considered as a location for the funeral.

"I can't really say if the request is strange or whether it is a legitimate request. All I can say simply is that the persons who are planning the funeral thought in their estimation would have been the proper venue to hold the funeral services.

But again as a proper Ministry, we have to ensure that we follow the proper lines of protocol and in this instance, the Permanent Secretary and the Chief Education Officer have both been instructed that no provision can be given to have the funeral service held at the Las Cuevas Government Primary School," said the Education Minister.

Reporter: Peter Christopher


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