Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves says enormous progress has been made within the Royal St. Vincent and the Grenadines Police Force (RSVGPF) over the past 16 plus years, since his administration came to office in 2001.
Speaking today on WEFM’s Morning program, Dr. Gonsalves who is also the Minister of National Security said that when the Unity Labour Party (ULP) came to office in 2001, a number of police stations were in a deplorable condition.
The Prime Minister noted however, that despite the marked improvement in the physical facilities of the Police Force (such as in Canouan, Biabou, Georgetown, Mesopotamia, Questelles, Stubbs and Rose Hall) over the past years, work of a continuing nature remains to be done.
In regards to the issue of salary, the Prime Minister said that “in 2007 with the reclassification, the salary of a Constable was increased by about 70% and there were adjustments throughout the entire salary scale.
In relation to the matter of settling grievances, the Prime Minister said such issues needs to be addressed internally, within the Police Force.
Prime Minister Gonsalves comments comes in light of recent developments which have led to the transfers of three police officers, including the Chairman of the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Police Welfare Association (SVGPWA).
The three officers Sergeant Brenton Smith, and Constables Kenroy Martin and Jermaine Roberts have been transferred to other districts after having complained bitterly in a WhatsApp group chat, which was leaked to the media and hierarchy of the Police Force, about conditions affecting the Police Force and proposing that they storm the Office of the Prime Minister to have those issues addressed.