There are police ranks involved in corrupt activities – says Rohee
Minister of Home Affairs, Clement Rohee, while meeting with the private sector of the Corentyne, has said that there is no perfect Police Force in the world.
He questioned which country in the world has a “perfect police force. Name me the perfect families; the perfect individuals…and then I will ask you, if you don’t have perfection in a family…Then I will ask you, you tell me why we expect to have a perfect police force.”
Just as families have the so-called ‘black- sheep’ and wayward ones, similarly we should accept that the Police Force cannot be perfect.
“And the police force has admitted that; over and over they have said it perfectly; the Commissioner has said it, that there are bad eggs, bad apples and rotten mangoes in the force—a force with thousands of people.
“How (do) you expect to have every member of the force to be this perfect policeman? It is a mass organisation and everyone that comes into that organisation comes from a different background, different upbringing and values”.
They do go through training, he stated, to change those values and make them have police values and police philosophy, he added.
Guyanese will have imperfections in a mass organisation of this type, he said, and the imperfection is where “you will find the individual situations…that a few policemen, here and there, are engaged in corrupt activities– I have never denied that”.
It is indeed true, he said, that out of the thousands of police, “a few individuals are corrupt– but the point is, don’t take those few that are corrupt and brand and label the whole organisation as corrupt”.
He noted, too, that he usually asks people for evidence when they come to him and report bribes being solicited by the police. “They say they don’t want any trouble…just to bring the evidence to prove that this policeman is corrupt, even that they don’t want to do.
“And you know why? It is self- preservation—They don’t want to get involved, but what they do get involved in is their mouths a run like Kaieteur News”.
When it comes to giving the hard evidence that this person is corrupt, people are not prepared to do that, Rohee said. “But we are prepared to go on the basis of hear say–a hear– they say– but we ain’t got no evidence”.
If indeed there is evidence that there are corrupt persons in any public organisation, “don’t only get involved in what is called rumour mongering”.
He said that people are fed with the “juicy and sex stories that the media put out and they (the people) believe”.
“Somebody just got to say, in a rum shop or in a cake shop or bus stop, that last night, I see Clement Rohee been pissing pon a lantern post; it ain’t happen, never happened, but somebody just got to tell somebody that– and it gone- -from one tongue to the next and don’t be surprised if you see it in ‘Dem Boys Seh’ or a newspaper”.
This is the extent, he said, to which we have dropped in the society. “As long as it sounds denigrating, bad on the person, this is where the evil in us is. People don’t like to hear good things of other people…they like to hear the worst of another person and to add insult to injury, when the person dead and lie down in his coffin, the people turn up like saints and they talking good things when he died”. Bring the evidence, he urged the public, “because it just can’t be Kaieteur News seh, or Stabroek News seh, or somebody seh or Dem boys seh… it cannot be that!”
He also noted that persons making corruption allegations have to be prepared to go to court and not only sit down and talk.
Numerous allegations are always leveled against the members of Government agencies especially the Guyana Police Force, but people would never make corruption allegations against institutions like the U.S. or Canadian Embassies, since they place those agencies in high esteem, Rohee said.
Rohee was asked by the Central Corentyne Chambers of Commerce to be present and address several issues raised by the chamber, including corrupt traffic cops, traffic speed limits, and animals on the roadway.
Rohee met with the stakeholders of the business community at the Nand Persaud Rice Mill Complex at Number 36 Village on the Corentyne. The meeting was deemed a failure by the businessmen since they said Rohee failed to address the issues.