Opposition Parliamentarian Anil Nandlall has recommended that the human resources component of the Guyana Police Force (GPF) be restructured to offset the human capacity shortfall which he claims exists.
In his column, the “Unruly Horse“, the former Attorney General said that the GPF is under strength by over 1,000 persons and it has been so for the longest while.
“Yet, there are more than a thousand trained police officers within the Force who are performing non-police functions,” he argued.
The politician is of the opinion that these officers should be transferred to “active duty.”
“For example, the drivers, the dispatchers, the messengers, the secretaries, the clerks, the telephonists, the office assistants, even the persons who feed and bathe the horses and dogs are all trained police officers. These functions can easily be performed by civilians,” Nandlall declared.
The former Legal Affairs Minister noted that the Immigration Department should not be manned by police officers, but rather, the posts should be occupied by non-police personnel.
“There is no good reason why the Immigration Department cannot be disengaged from the Guyana Police Force and staffed with civilians. So too should the Department which issues Certificates of Fitness, driver’s license and indeed, the entire administrative machinery of the Police Force. Indeed, so it is done, in most countries.”
Nandlall in his piece went on to say that all trained police officers who perform non-policing functions should be incorporated into active duty in the Police Force and be unleashed in the battle against crime. The politician even suggested that the traffic contingent of the force be slashed by 50 percent, and the remaining cops are used only to direct traffic.
“Roadblocks should only be erected when a particular emergency requires same. Traffic Police randomly stopping road users capriciously and then embarking on a fishing expedition to establish whether they have committed an offence, at roadblocks and elsewhere, is absolutely unlawful, unconstitutional, constitutes harassment and is an exercise used to extract money from road users,” He declared.
In addition to this, Nandlall sought to cover his bases; addressing specifically, the possible question: “Why didn’t the PPP make these changes during its 23 years in public office?”
To this, he responded, “I am aware that my critics will ask, and perhaps rightfully so, why were these reforms not implemented under the PPP administration. Some had started, but I will concede, more should have been done. In any event, nothing stops this Government from fully implementing them and taking the credit. After all, it is their time now.”