Georgetown, Guyana -(July 17, 2015) Presidential Advisor on National Security, Brigadier Edward Collins today kicked off a four-day outreach to law enforcement agencies in Berbice. This is the first of a series of such outreaches to be carried out across the country with the aim of interacting with police officers; giving them the opportunity to highlight their challenges and make recommendations on the way forward.
Following a report from Divisional Commander, Christopher Griffith, Brigadier Collins urged the Division to continue to deal strictly with rogue officers, especially those that are responsible for the destruction of police vehicles. Commander Griffith reported that 29 complaints were received about ranks of B’ Division. Of this number, seven have been placed before the court; while departmental actions have been taken against the others.
He also called on the Commander and senior ranks to develop a closer relationship with community members. In this regard, the B’ Division is currently working closely with the Community Policing Groups (CPGs) in the Region.
Brigadier Collins was briefed on the overall operations of the police in B’ Division by the Commander who indicated that there are currently 385 ranks attached to the division which falls woefully short of the recommended 928, given the vastness of the Region.
Commander Griffith said that this shortage is largely due to the fact that the Force has been unable to attract recruits because of the current salaries and allowances being offered. He said that if police officers are offered more attractive salary packages, more people will be encouraged to join and even trained ranks who have left the Force to seek more lucrative options will return to serve.
President David Granger has committed to modernising the Guyana Police Force. In his address to the at the opening of the 11th Parliament, on June 10, President Granger said, “Your Government will refashion the Guyana Police Force into a more professional and better equipped law-enforcement agency. We shall pay policemen and women better so that they are not easily led into temptation.”
This outreach visit forms part of the consultative process aimed at better equipping the force and improving security across Guyana. Brigadier Collin will spend the next few days visiting the Whim Police Station, the Guyana Revenue Authority and Berbice Anti-Smuggling Squad (BASS) in Moleson Creek, Orealla, Canje, East Bank Berbice, and Fort Wellington on the West Coast of Berbice.