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Springs accident should be a wake-up call for PM Dickon Mitchell

The scene of the accident involving the BMW vehicle that is frequently used by Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell

Police have launched an investigation to determine the circumstances in which the vehicle that Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell was travelling in ended up in a collision with another vehicle along the Springs main road on Tuesday morning.

The Prime Minister came out of his vehicle within seconds of the accident without any injuries.

A top security told THE NEW TODAY that the black BMW in which PM Dickon Mitchell was sitting in the back seat, was struck by a vehicle which came out of the yard of the Evangelical Church on the slope of Springs Hill during the morning rush hour.

He said the investigation is being undertaken to determine what exactly happened as the siren was on from the vehicle that formed part of the entourage.

It is the first time that a Grenada Prime Minister is known to have been involved in an accident while sitting in a State vehicle decorated with the national flag.

According to the security official, he hopes that the accident will be a wake-up call for all those involved in planning the security operation around the Prime Minister to make sure that all the proper protocols are put in place and followed to protect him at all times.

The source also commented on the scale-down Security Detail which consists of only two vehicles that accompany PM Dickon Mitchell.

He said that political pressure among the population has oftentimes resulted in some persons occupying the Office of the Prime Minister to drastically scale down on their own personal security arrangements.

He lamented the fact that people would complain that too many vehicles with security personnel are assigned to the Prime Minister “and for some reason these politicians always feel that they have to please John Public.”

“If you ask me the Prime Minister’s entourage has to be a certain number of vehicles and I don’t care what anyone says …there are certain costs that go with protecting the Prime Minister but how many Grenadians understand that.

“If he passes with four vehicles you will hear … look he has four vehicles … and all kinds of stupid comments and when the politicians hear that now they go scale back and go to the minimum.”

“People need to understand that there are certain things that go with a Head of State, a Head of Government and no matter who is in office, whether it is NNP, NDC – whoever – this is something that is understood and until the politicians get people to understand that (then) we go have problems. It is a cost that you have to endure. That cost is greater than any other.”

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“The same politicians do turn around and say no, we can’t do that. Therein lies the problem. The only time we understand that is when something happens. When nothing happens we always want to go with – we can’t do this and we can’t do that.”

According to the top security official, people often turn around and blame the members of the Security Detail around the Prime Minister for an incident that took place on Tuesday at Springs and not the holder of the office who might have a nonchalant attitude towards his own security.

He said that this issue of lack of proper security around a Prime Minister can also fall at his own feet.

“All of them do that (want scaled down security) but the people responsible (for the arrangement) have to be strong enough (to stand up to a Prime Minister,” he added.

According to the security insider, the current members of the Detail around Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell “have come a long way with this present one” as he is known to be very nonchalant when it comes to a tight security cordon around him.

“…I hope that the accident now is a wake-up call for him because left to him he is going to walk out of his house, open his vehicle, jump in and drive,” he said.

“There was a lot of work done to get him to reach where he is now. The accident will help (him to think otherwise) because he would realise now,” he added.

The security official related the attitude of a former Grenada Prime Minister when it comes to the manner in which he operated at the State level.

He said that some people will call the Prime Minister all kinds of late hours in the night even when he is asleep and wake him up to bring to his attention all sorts of trivial things but because of the vote “they can’t tell people where to get off.”

‘That is the sad part,” he quipped.

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