Min. Harmon unaware of senior officials entering Police Force with ‘bogus’ qualifications – high level of scrutiny at entry level

DPI, GUYANA, Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Minister of State Joseph Harmon, speaking recently at a post-Cabinet press briefing, refuted claims that at least two senior officials of the Guyana Police Force (GPF) entered the Force using bogus qualifications.

Minister of State Joseph Harmon.

Minister Harmon reasoned that there is a high level of scrutiny for entry into the Force.

“I cannot say that has come to our [Government] attention …most police officers come through what is known as the ranks from Constable coming up. Some of them have actually benefitted from a direct entry process, which means they are appointed as Cadet Officers and they are trained at the Cadet School…then they become an Assistant Superintendent going up.”

During the process, Minister Harmon contended that there must have been checks to determine if an officer has bogus qualifications.

Updating the media on the reconstitution of the Police and Public Service Commissions, the State Minister said these matters are currently before the Parliamentary Committee on Appointments.

“Once that is completed, it is then sent to the National Assembly which approves of it and then it comes to the President for appointment,” he explained.

In December 2017, President David Granger, while addressing the Press, said that legitimate concerns raised by members of the GPF had resulted in him ordering that promotions approved by the Police Service Commission (PSC) be halted.

The Head of State said that there were a number of allegations, which justified that the Commission’s selection process had been compromised, hence in the public’s interest he saw it fit that the nominations be frozen.

It was anticipated that the Commission, the life of which came to an end in the latter part of 2017, would have been reconstituted by December 2017.

The next sitting of the National Assembly is scheduled for March 15, 2018.

In addition, Minister Harmon disclosed that the reconstitution of the Council for the University of Guyana has engaged the attention of the Cabinet.

He said some concerns were noted and will be addressed by the Minister of Education and it is anticipated that once those concerns are addressed, Cabinet will today give its approval for the new council.

The concerns raised were in relation to representation for women’s rights and Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs, which will be examined by the respective Ministers with responsibility for those matters.

 

By: Stacy Carmichael

 

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