Opposition MP Donna Cox yesterday raised another questionable purchase by Commissioner of Police Dwayne Gibbs—this time some newly designed uniforms which the Cabinet did not approve.
Speaking in the debate on the Police Regulations in the House of Representatives, Tower D, Waterfront Complex, Port of Spain, Cox said the uniforms on which Gibbs spent "considerable sums" were just "sitting there".
"We want to know where are the uniforms and what are the plans for these uniforms," she asked.
She advised National Security Minister Brig John Sandy to look at a warehouse called Quarter Master Stores on Wrightson Road for them.
Gibbs has been under fire for the award of a contract worth just under $1 million for a light surveillance aircraft, which was approved without Sandy's knowledge. The Commissioner has the authority to spend $1 million in his own discretion.
Sandy, in response to Cox's statements on the uniform, said if what she said was the case, he wanted to advise her to address her questions "directly" to the "accounting officer" in the Police Service (ie Gibbs).
Sandy had earlier piloted the motion to approve the regulations.
The regulations confirm the duty allowance for officers (which has been paid since October 2010). The regulations also provide for the computation in the period counted as pensionable service, the time that an officer acts in a higher post, once it is three years before his retirement.
The regulations also provide for an officer who is physically or mentally disabled to collect a pension higher than the minimum monthly pension of $3,000.
Sandy said Government wanted to provide an attractive package to police officers but it recognised that no amount of money would be enough because it could not compensate those who put their lives on the line in the service of this country.
"We recognise the value of praise to the human spirit and to the building of morale," he said.
Sandy, who declined all efforts by the media to get a comment on the police raid of Newsday, said he remained confident in the professionalism of the Police Service and it had begun the process of change that would usher in the delivery of improved service.
Cox asked why the benefits given in the Regulations did not extend to Special Reserve Officers. Sandy said he had made such a recommendation, but stressed: "Rome was not built in a day. Their (SRPs) term will come."