$58.6B to improve the security sector

In its effort to ensure a safe and secure environment for citizens and investors, the government on Monday announced a $58.6 billion investment in the security sector for 2023.

Guyana Police Force

A sum of $2.4 billion has been allocated to upgrade police stations and facilities nationwide.

The government has also earmarked $500 million to continue supporting the force’s mobility by expanding its transportation fleet. In addition, $2 billion has been set aside to expand the ‘safe city’ programme to Regions Three and Six.

This will further aid the Guyana Police Force’s crime-fighting capability through the provision of the Intelligence Video Surveillance command centres and 911 emergency response capability in these regions.

Ranks of the Guyana Police Force on duty

The government will strengthen forensic crime-fighting capabilities with $2.1 billion allocated to develop an electronic identification (EID) system.

“Additionally, we will strengthen our forensic crime-fighting capabilities with the acquisition of a DNA analysis workflow system and we will initiate the preparation and acquisition of an electronic identification system, to introduce a single electronic identifier, by which each citizen will be assigned a unique national registration number to be used by all private and public sector agencies,” Dr Singh informed the National Assembly during the Budget 2023 presentation.

Another 3,000 ranks of the police force will undergo training as $140 million has been earmarked to improve the investigative and forensic capabilities.

A sum of $111 million will also be allocated in 2023, to support community policing groups.

Guyana Prison Service

Meanwhile, the government has injected $5.5 billion to improve the facilities of the Guyana Prison Service and train inmates in various life skills so they could re-integrate into society and prevent recidivism.

A total of $2.2 billion has been budgeted to advance construction at the Mazaruni and Lusignan prisons and commence work for the reconstruction of the New Amsterdam prison.

Also, $50 million is allocated to ensure “trade shops” at these facilities are fully equipped to facilitate training in carpentry, joinery, masonry, block making, and other craft and trade activities for inmates.

$100 million will go towards the training of 1,500 inmates which will support their rehabilitation and social transformation in preparation for their exit from the prison system. Some 400 prison personnel will be trained in prison management to ensure the prison service is staffed with qualified and competent officers.

Guyana Fire Service

Works on the Guyana Fire Service Headquarters and construction of fire stations at Leonora, Wales, and Ogle will continue as over $545 million has been budgeted to advance these and other initiatives.

Minister Singh noted, “In 2022, we spent $400 million to acquire several pieces of firefighting equipment… in 2023 we will spend another$489 million to further augment the equipment stock of the fire service.”

A further $20 million is allocated for the training of fire officers in 2023.

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