Ali: All Police Commanders must pursue degrees, masters; gov’t will pay
As part of the government’s plan to revamp the Guyana Police Force, all police commanders are now required to pursue a degree or master programme at the University of Guyana.
This was revealed by Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, President Dr Irfaan Ali on Tuesday at the annual police Christmas breakfast held at the Police Officers’ Mess, Eve Leary, Georgetown.
The President said the government will pay in full for senior officers to pursue their studies as the men and women in uniform are his greatest assets.
“Every person that is a commander of a branch or division, we will pay in full for improvement in their education.
“Every single rank who is a commander at a branch or regional division level, you must at least pursue a degree or if you already have a degree, next year, we will enroll you in the masters programme at the University of Guyana in defence studies,” the Head-of-State revealed to loud applause from officers.
Dr Ali said the government wants to ensure that the Police Force has the strategic tools to effectively execute their duties and to do this, education is key.
Additionally, the top 50 awardees of the Force’s annual awards will also be given the same opportunity as the commanders. The Commander-in-Chief stated that this initiative forms part of creating a police force that is highly trained.
BRIDGING THE GAP
President Ali said when he assumed office in August 2020, there was a strange divide between the Police Force and the Guyana Defence Force.
“I set out fundamentally, to bridge the gap and to integrate all our men and women in uniform, I must say at the highest level of leadership there has been great integration,” the Commander-in-Chief stated.
He said it is important for crime-fighting, personal development, and networking that the commanders of the army and the Police Force work closely together.
President Ali said the officers must inherit patriotic and national thinking attitudes.
“I depend on you the most to take the message of One Guyana but more importantly to live the message of One Guyana, you are my greatest assets and ally in building this One Guyana,” the President said.
President Ali said he will soon be leading a major clean-up of Georgetown.
“As Commander-in-Chief, I will be leading an effort with the army and we are going to include the police force in going out there and leading by example, in the cleaning of this city, to make it a point that the city and the cleanliness of our environment like I said with tourism is not a political matter, it is a matter that defines us as a people.”
Meanwhile, President Ali recently announced the implementation of a pilot system – an electronic speed monitoring system – targeting motorists and signaling end the of police-operated speed guns. This system will be installed along with the new Eccles/Mandela and Diamond/Eccles highway.
Containerized police outposts will also be positioned along the new highway.
President Ali explained that the electronic monitoring system will also be able to tell who is wearing seatbelts and will be able to pick up the types of vehicles and registration numbers by a simple scan of the cameras.
“…this is a pilot, this will be taken all across the country,” the President revealed.
President Ali said more technological equipment, such as drones, will be used to help anti-crime strategies and further boost the Police Force.
The government is also looking to invest in assets and a plan is being formulated to utilise the country’s waterways as the first line of defence.
“We want to give you the tools to be successful, when you are successful all of us are safer,” the President said.
He also spoke of his appreciation of the positive response and commitment he has gotten from the Police Force.
President Ali assured that the welfare and salary issues of the officers will continue to be addressed.
The President attended the event along with Prime Minister, Brigadier (ret’d) Mark Phillips; Minister of Home Affairs, Robeson Benn; Commissioner of Police (ag), Nigel Hoppie; Chief of Staff of the Guyana Defence Force, Brigadier Godfrey Bess along with senior ranks of the Guyana Police Force and other officials.