PAYING RESPECTS: Acting Police Commissioner Stephen Williams arrives at the home of murdered police sergeant Hayden Manwaring in Couva yesterday. —Photo: INNIS FRANCIS

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Panday: Slain cop passed over for promotion

By Nikita Braxton-Benjamin

FALLEN Sgt Hayden Manwaring was preparing to file legal action to contest the failure of the Promotion Advisory Board to elevate him to the rank of Inspector even though he had met all the requirements.

His attorney, Subhas Panday, said yesterday he was set to file a constitutional motion against the Police Service on Manwaring's behalf.

Panday said last year he sent two letters to the Commissioner of Police asking for his intervention.

Panday said he never received a response.

Manwaring died on Tuesday night after he was shot with his own service firearm while trying to arrest suspects who had earlier robbed a fast food outlet.

Panday said, "He died a disappointed man because of the way the Police Service treated him. He was depressed, disappointed, being taken advantage of, but yet he performed his duty beyond the call of duty. He was a committed, loyal and hardworking officer."

He said Manwaring was promoted to the rank of sergeant effective September 3, 2010.

On October 20, 2011 Manwaring was interviewed for the rank of Inspector by the Promotion Advisory Board.

But two months later, in a letter signed by then Deputy Commissioner of Police and chairman of the Promotion Advisory Board, Stephen Williams, Manwaring was told that due to an "administrative error" he was interviewed back in October 2011.

"When the sitting of the Promotion Advisory Board (PAB) was convened on 6 December 2010, you did not qualify to be considered for promotion to the rank of Police Inspector. It is mandated by Section 21 (4) of the Police Service Act No. 7 of 2006 that on promotion, a police officer shall serve the prescribed period of probation which is 12 months. A careful examination of the records at the Human Resource Branch has revealed that you did not serve the prescribed period of probation by 6 December 2010 and as such, you did not qualify to be interviewed," the letter stated.

Panday yesterday said Manwaring had no control over the constitution of the Board and the process was "crazy and unfair" to his client.

He wrote to Williams, "It must be noted that he was interviewed after he had completed his probationary period of one year. There appears to be no time limit to the life of the Promotion Advisory Board and no regularity and certainty as to its convening," Panday said.

The attorney said that he and Manwaring were supposed to meet on Ash Wednesday, when officers were allowed time off after the Carnival season, to start working on the constitutional motion.

But Manwaring told Panday he was unavailable as he was at work.

The attorney yesterday called for the officer to be promoted posthumously to the rank of Inspector and that it be dated retroactively.

"In order not to allow Sgt Manwaring's life to have gone in vain, the Police Service should put its house in order to prevent further discrimination against police officers in terms of promotions. All speeches and eulogies will be in vain if the Police Service does not rectify this injustice that has been done to the late Sergeant Manwaring and his family," he said.

See Page 9.

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