A senior police officer has claimed that there is a management deficit within the hierarchy of the Royal Grenada Police Force (RGPF).
Speaking to THE NEW TODAY on Tuesday, the officer who spoke on condition that he was not identified took shots at the two Deputy Commissioners of Police, Michael Francois and Tafawa Pierre as persons who are lacking in “the broad experience and knowledge” to adequately perform in their jobs.
He said that Pierre, the husband of Education Minister, Emmalin Pierre and tipped to become the next Police Commissioner, was elevated to the post of Number Two in RGPF after heading the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) for years and with little or no experience in policing.
“He (Pierre) has been out of the force for a very long time,” said the high-ranking officer.
Another senior police officer who was approached for comment on the issue charged that the two Deputy Commissioners of Police do not command the respect of the rank and file members of the Police Force and described them as “two jokers”.
“For this force to make progress all these jokers have to be removed from the top,” he said.
He also claimed that the dearth in managerial skills within the top echelon of RGPF can be seen in the fact that head of Traffic on the Carenage, Superintendent of Police Randy Connaught has now been sent to police headquarters on Fort George to assist the newly appointed Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP), John Mitchell to carry out some of his functions.
Inspector Rondell Baptiste is currently acting as the officer-in-charge of the Traffic Department.
According to the police insider, the weakness in the middle management rank in the force can be seen by the decision of Deputy Commissioner Pierre to overlook a number of Superintendents of Police and to recruit an Inspector from the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) to serve as his assistant.
“That is the first time in the history of the force you take an Inspector – somebody who does not have a track record of good leadership and managerial qualities on the job to give them such a position. It’s friend\friend,” he said.
The high-ranking police officer also noted that the same thing was done in recent days with the installation of a Police Constable to head a critical and important agency as the Anti-Money Laundering & Terrorism Financing Commission.
He expressed concern that the authorities will hand the job to such a low-ranking police officer with no experience and lacking the necessary qualifications to head such a sensitive body.
He said that position is one of the highest paid in the public service with the office holder being paid $7500.00 a month.
The senior police officer recalled that embattled former Cabinet Secretary, Gemma Bain-Thomas was transferred to the post as Executive Director when Prime Minister Mitchell returned to power following the 2013 general election and indicated that he did not want her to stay in the position.
The ruling New National Party (NNP) administration was forced to get the Public Service Commission (PSC) to find another position in the public service carrying the same salary scale as Cabinet Secretary in keeping with the rules.
The senior cop said it is not comprehensible how the current rulers can take a Police Constable and place him into one of the most senior positions in the public service.