$35.6BILLION for security sector

─ 14% increase over 2018

─ $700M for new police divisional headquarters, rehabilitate stations

─ “the Coalition Government will continue to be a pillar of support in its efforts to keep our country safe” – Min. Jordan 

DPI, Guyana, Monday, November 26, 2018

Describing the safety of citizens, happiness and the protection of their basic rights as paramount to Government, Finance Minister Winston Jordan announced the allocation of $35.6Billion for the security sector. Addressing the National Assembly, during his Budget 2019 presentation, the minister stated that the funds will be used for “consolidating and expanding” the sector.

He highlighted that $4Billion will be used to maintain and improve the prison service, “including a sum of $1.5Billion… to improving and developing the prison’s infrastructure, to ease overcrowding and remove the need to use the temporary holding areas like the Lusignan Holding Facility.”

The additional funds will see the construction of the new Georgetown Prison, the expansion of the Mazaruni Prison and preparatory work for the reconstruction of the New Amsterdam Prison, scanners and requisite equipment.

The Guyana Police Force, the minister said, will use its funds to consolidate and expand its services to cover larger areas. Noting that the force is harmonizing its divisional boundaries to ensure headquarters in each division, “nearly $700Million will be expended to construct and improve police buildings including four new divisional headquarters in Regions 1, 4, 5 and 6.”

It was explained that $500Million will be spent on the force’s fleets’ expansion. These include vehicular, marine, canine and mounted branches. Ballistic, crime scene and other equipment will also be procured.

The finance minister reminded of the successes obtained via CANU and said the agency will be able to intensify monitoring operations, at border locales and “hot-spots.” The Forensic Laboratory will also be further equipped, he added.

The Guyana Fire Service will benefit from four new ambulances, enabling the EMS to fully service Region 4, with a response time of approximately 10 minutes.

The Guyana Defence Force’s allocation will enable the upgrading of facilities at Camp Ayanganna, Camp Stephenson, Anna Regina, New Amsterdam, Mokouria, and Morawhanna. The GDF will also be able to procure equipment and improve its fleet of land and water transport, inclusive of the Flagship GDF Essequibo.

Minister Jordan noted that initiatives supporting direct interventions with citizens will continue with public awareness campaigns in targeted communities across the regions. Facilities will be established in depressed areas to “promote interaction, skills training, recreation and social cohesion.”

In conclusion, Minister Jordan reiterated, “that the Coalition Government will continue to be a pillar of support in its efforts to keep our country safe.”

Paul Mc Adam.

Image: Department of Public Information.

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