The New Today

Sweeping things under the carpet!!!

THE NEW TODAY is extremely concerned about two issues which should never be allowed to die a natural death – the Piton Tower and the accusations of sexual abuse made against senior ranking members of the Royal Grenada Police Force (RGPF).

Over the years, the hierarchy of the police force have adopted a policy of sweeping things under the carpet especially in connection with wrongdoing by senior ranking officers instead of engaging in meaningful investigations in order to bring the culprits to justice.

The police have been aimed solely at one thing – to protect the top members of RGPF, especially those referred to as “The Men in Khaki.”

This newspaper has brought into the public space certain allegations about a controversial communications tower at Piton in the St Patrick East constituency and the Commissioner of Police informed that he had received certain information and that an investigation will be carried out into the matter.

Over one month has passed and nothing is being heard about the investigation anymore and even some police officers have indicated that they do not even know who is doing this investigation as it seems to be one of the biggest secrets of the century.

Most of the information provided about the Tower and about those who might be involved in potential wrong-doing are coming from police officers themselves with knowledge of the issue.

One experienced police officer in criminal investigation indicated that the issues involving the Tower can be unraveled within a matter of days and not this length of time.

This officer pointed out that given the timeframe of only a few years ago – 2017 to be precise – the Customs Department will have all the relevant information about what came into the country consigned to the police in the period under review.

There must be markings on all equipment including serial numbers that came into the country in an effort to distinguish what belonged to those foreign powers with interest in Piton and others with Towers on that particular location.

There are also ex-police officers living in the United States who have pertinent information about the Tower issue and have not been contacted to solicit any evidence from them.

A serious allegation made from inside RGPF itself concerns the removal of solar panels by a particular police officer and taken away to his home somewhere along the West Coast.

It is a fact that pictures do exist of the presence of several solar panels on a particular rooftop in that part of the island.

The officer whose name keeps coming up in connection with the controversial Tower should be allowed to provide evidence and proof beyond a shadow of a doubt that cannot be questioned that these solar panels have nothing to do with the Tower at Piton.

Grenada does not manufacture solar panels and the Customs Department will have information on all Solar Panels that came into the country including brand name and specifications.

THE NEW TODAY is also calling on acting Commissioner of Police, Don McKenzie to use the period under his stewardship in the absence of the substantive holder of the post, Edvin Martin to send a different signal to the public that under his watch it will not be business as usual.

Mr. McKenzie can begin the process by taking a new look and a much meaningful approach to the issue of sexual abuse within RGPF by “THE MEN IN KHAKI.”

As a starter, he should reconstitute the so-called Committee that is nothing but a sham that was set up by Commissioner Martin to take charge of investigations into allegations made against these senior cop.

This is a very much compromised committee as the female cop appointed to serve on the body has no power to call in for questioning any officer above her rank who is accused of being a culprit.

The meeting that was held by Commissioner Martin with female officers in light of the issue left a sour taste in the mouths of those in attendance as he seemed to focus on those low-ranking officers who have been charged with sexual offences and not “THE MEN IN KHAKI.”

The Prime Minister and Minister of National Security Dickon Mitchell has already sent a signal that he will not get involved in dismantling the Edvin Martin committee as he had nothing to do with its establishment.

It is quite obvious to us that the position being adopted by those in charge of RGPF is to do nothing of substance and to allow all these sensitive investigations that can lead to the downfall of some of their colleagues to die a natural death.

If the NDC administration is really serious about transformation it would move in the direction of passing legislation in Parliament as soon as possible for a Freedom of Information Act.

Armed with such legislation, any member of the media can approach the law courts to force the hands of those in authority including the Police Force to provide information once the national security of the State is not at risk and compromised.

It is time for these sweeping of things under the carpet by RGPF and others to come to an end in the national interest.

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