Saturday, December 16, 2017

Undermining the Police Service?

 I think the Police Service Commission (PSC) has demonstrated undeniable apathy regarding the appointment of a permanent police commissioner.  My opinion is justified by the following facts:

I quote from a television report: “The Police Service Commission, at its meeting on July 31, 2012, appointed Stephen Williams, Deputy Commissioner of Police, to act as Commissioner of Police of T&T from August 7, 2012 to January 31, 2013…”  That appointment was made, supposedly, after “careful and deliberate consideration to the suitability of eligible officers and it was unanimously decided that Mr Williams is the most suitable…”

Over two years and ten months later, Mr Williams is still acting.  Was there any manifest diminution of qualifications?

A reasonable person can infer from the commission’s failure to appoint a permanent police commissioner that it lacks competence to identify a suitable candidate.  It defies logic that with all its human resources of education and sophistication, T&T does not have an individual worthy of heading the Police Service.  It seems that “careful and deliberate” equates to foot dragging ad nauseam.

It is sad that with all the talk of fighting crime, the department tasked with spearheading those efforts is not given the respect and consideration it deserves.  I mean no disrespect to Mr Williams.  On the contrary, I am saddened by the tacit aspersions cast upon him by the commission’s failure to do its duty, one way or the other.  If the PSC shows such lack of respect for Mr Williams, how can there be any expectation that his subordinate officers and the rank and file of the Police Service would be enthusiastic about his leadership or programmes to reduce crime? 

 This situation paints a picture of the Police Service as a toothless tiger; sends the wrong message to those who would venture outside the law, and works against the society as a whole.     

Ultimately, the Ministry of National Security must bear some culpability in this matter.  

Selwyn P Nimblett

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