Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves during the sitting of the house of assembly earlier this week disclosed that he has been having discussions with the commissioner of Police Colin John, pertaining to hiring of skilled drivers to the Royal St. Vincent and the Grenadines Police Force.
The Prime Minister said this is due to the condition of the vehicles currently in the force and the manner in which some officers treat them.
“This is something which I had discussed with the commissioner, we are actively looking at to hire persons who do not now have the entry qualifications to the police force but are good drivers and have them trained as auxiliaries, for them to drive vehicles because there are many, many experiences over the twenty one and half years where we buy new vehicles this week and within two to three weeks, four weeks, they mash up,” Gonsalves said.
The Prime Minister noted the way that some officers drive the vehicles as if they are on race tracks.
“Some policemen, you see them drive them as though they are at le mans or some race circuit. They think that because Lewis Hamilton come from Grenada and St. Vincent is nearby that they can be on the race track too. You know that, I know that, everybody in this country knows that.” He said.
The Prime Minister said the situation has gotten so far out of hand that the officers are being asked to pay for any damage they have caused to the vehicle left in their care. He said the implementation of this rule has led to some officers not wanting to drive the vehicles at all.
“It has gotten so bad that they’re saying now we’re going to insist that if you mash it up, you have to pay, deductions have to come in accordance with the rules, and of course, because that is the case, many persons now don’t want to drive the vehicles,” The Prime Minister said.
The Prime Minister says there is an urgent need to get the situation pertaining to vehicles within the police force under control.