Capacity building, training and infrastructural development are among the priorities for the Guyana Police Force as it seeks to improve its service to the nation.
This was announced at a multi-donor workshop, which was held on Monday afternoon at the Marriott Hotel, in Kingston, following the recent change in the leadership of the force.
The major objective of the workshop was to align future activities of the international development partners with the high-level needs of the GPF.
Speaking at the workshop, Minister of Public Security Khemraj Ramjattan stressed that there is a need for support in relation to police capacity and investigating and combating police corruption given the too-frequent allegations being made by members of the public.
Ramjattan added that there is also need for improvement in the police emergency response, strengthening patrol management and the revision of various training curriculum.
He also said that among the matters that need to be addressed are a review and update of the force’s Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) to ensure the treatment of persons in police custody meets international standards. “That is important even though it’s an aspect of the police training,” he said.
Meanwhile, new Commissioner of Police Leslie James said the force is also seeking to have leadership training for senior police officers, including exchange visits to observe best practices, as well as a review of its training modules.
With regards to infrastructural development, he said efforts are being made to expand the video rooms at the Criminal Investigation Depart-ment (CID), Eve Leary and in ‘E,’ ‘F’ and ‘G’ divisions, construct gender-inclusive accommodation at training facilities at Essequibo and Ber-bice, expand the data centre and create an off-site backup system.
Additionally, he said a total of 19 police stations will be remodeled and rehabilitated. One of them, which was recently completed, is the Mackenzie Police Station, which was commissioned last Friday.
In terms of Information and Commu-nication Technologies, James related that the GPF will seek to acquire more computers, some of which will be placed in police vehicles.
Other advances in this area, he said, include the expansion of the Integrated Crime and Information System (ICIS), the acquisition of modern, high frequency radios, the expansion of CCTV at all police stations and systems set up for the sharing of up-to-date information on firearms originating from developing countries.
Lastly, James cited the need for “fit for the purpose” vehicles for patrols. “In the past, we have acquired many vehicles but they might not have necessarily met the necessary standard,” he explained.