– Dr Luncheon
The British had unilaterally decided in their submission, that the Security Sector Reform Action Plan (SSRAP) will be implemented ‘their way’. This has caused a falling out with the Guyana Government, according to Head of the Presidential Secretariat, Dr. Roger Luncheon.
On Thursday, Dr Luncheon told the media that fundamentally, the issue regarding the SSRP is the fact that British wanted to ‘externally’ manage the project.
The British suggestion for the implementation of the project ‘offends’, Dr. Luncheon said.
He added that a date is yet to be set for the resumption of negotiations on the issue.
Dr. Luncheon said that equal to the British commitment to move forward, the government is also looking forward to the process.
The Head of the Presidential Secretariat added that reports of live firing at Guyana’s border with Venezuela, may be just a shadow concern. It is not in the proposal proffered by the British.
When asked about making public, the contentious British proposal so that the wider society could form an opinion, Dr Luncheon said that he would decide at a later date.
The British proposal, Dr. Luncheon had said, totally disregarded Guyana’s sovereignty.
He had previously told the media that the British proposal abandons the agreements that were negotiated, specifically on Guyana’s ownership.
According to Dr. Luncheon, the documents neglect to be in concurrence to what they had agreed upon during the negotiations.
The British, he had said, seem to be suggesting that there are capacity constraints in the process of implementation.
“The negotiations were completed. The agreed policy positions were with the British Government from December 2008, until April 2009.”
According to Dr. Luncheon, he was told in April that the document that allows Guyana to implement the policy, faithfully captured what was agreed to in December.
However, it did not, he added.
This sentiment was also expressed by members of the National Security Secretariat, which was constituted for this negotiation.
Just over a week ago, the government withdrew from further participation in the SSRAP being funded by the UK Government.
A recent British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) report stated that Guyana could lose £3M sterling (US$4.7 M).
The warning came amidst a disagreement between the two countries, on how to properly manage the funds that have been set-aside for the program.
The SSRAP, whose Interim Memorandum of Understanding was signed in August 2007, is aimed at improving police operations in crime hot spots, forensics, crime-intelligence and traffic policing.
British High Commissioner to Guyana, Fraser Wheeler told the media on Monday last, that the reform implementation process is ‘unfortunately going slowly’. He said that his government’s frustration with the pace of implementation was shared with President Bharrat Jagdeo.
The High Commissioner pointed out that the money has been ‘hanging around for a long time’.
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