The management of the Police Service is unwilling to act on the deficiencies in the service, an exasperated sounding Sgt Anand Ramesar said yesterday.
Ramesar, president of the Police Social and Welfare Association , said the Police Service had all the resources needed, including the law, that would effectively deal with the deficiencies.
The Express sought Ramesar’s views on the statements made by Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar at the launch of the Rapid Response Unit and her reading of the riot act to heads of security that they had better perform or else. She also announced that leave for police officers was suspended to deal with the crime wave but Ramesar lamented the restriction of leave for his fellow officers, saying that officers will be going through both psychological and physiological stress because of their increased work load, “and there are complaints in some divisions that officers being called out on their rest days with no considerations for the officers”.
He did not know how many officers were on leave but stated that the number is low since many of them had been called off leave during the Christmas holidays.
About the Prime Minister reading the riot act, Ramesar agreed , saying it “is a good trigger to boost performance but one of the issues not taken into consideration is the internal issues in the service that is depleting morale and motivation”.
He added, “what the Prime Minister needs to do is to read the riot act to the management of the service because there is a performance deficit”.
Asked to elaborate on this “performance deficit,” he explained, “it is their inability to deliver and that should be the focus ...we are also calling for a performance audit and a financial audit and how the money is being spent in the crime initiative”.
Ramesar slammed the performance of certain departments within the service which is responsible for maintaining a level of competence and professionalism within their ranks.
He said these departments were not holding up their end of the bargain.
He explained, “when you have officers who have been on suspension for seven, eight and nine years and getting their full salary and nothing happening to them, that tends to impact on morale but they (management of the Police Service) are not doing anything so what we need is leadership and management but we are not seeing that.”
Ramesar continued, “it is easy to say rogue elements and the need to deal with the rogue elements but they have the power to treat with that and they are doing nothing. In fact let me continue. Our management knows who are the risk groups and they have a clear list of all the hot-spots but where is the clear thinking in deployment strategy? Where is it?”