Oct 12, 2015 News
‘Better late than never’, is probably what the new government had in mind when it approached the United Kingdom’s High Commissioner to Guyana, James Gregory Quinn seeking to access the Security Sector Reform Action Plan (SSRAP) that the previous PPP/C government turned its back on.
Back in 2009, the UK had offered a hefty sum for the SSRAP but the previous government refused it on the grounds that the British law enforcement had too much of a big a role in the implementation of the plan.
On Friday last, Quinn hosted the media at his Bel Air, Georgetown residence for a briefing. At this forum, he said that the complaints by the previous government about the plan were completely baseless. “To be honest, the claims of 2009 that we were seeking to impose and basically run Guyanese law enforcement, in our opinion was without basis.”
During an interview with Kaieteur News after the press briefing, Quinn said that his main focus at the time is on the Security sector as it is a specific request from President David Granger.
Quinn said “there is a very clear interest and desire on the Guyanese government’s side for help on SSR (Security Sector Reform). Certainly as we move on from the election period our focus may be on what we can do in this sector.”
He pointed out that the UK already does work with the Special Organized Crime Unit (SOCU) “which you can argue is part of that 2009 programme.” Quinn also said that he and his team will have to finalize the Terms of Reference (TOR) for the needs assessment.
The British High Commissioner told Kaieteur News that the team will be looking at the Guyana Police Force to see what is lacking, identify the gaps and then strategize what could be done to address those gaps.
As for allocations for the project, Quinn said he is not sure of the amount but “there will certainly be some British money involved…Once we have an idea what the plan is, then there will be British money available; how much that is going to be, I do not know.”
Quinn added that the 2009 programme will definitely be updated and will include training that is expected to improve the capabilities of local police to handle crime scene investigations.
The original plan was developed in 2006 and was to be implemented in 2009; together with a three-year capacity building plan for a National Security Committee in the National Assembly between 2007 and 2009.
Parliamentary Oversight was described by the plan as being at the core of democratic governance and management of the security sector, and key to the success of the programme.
Security Sector Reform was seen as a critical component for the attainment of good and democratic governance and was twinned with the Commonwealth Secretariat’s sponsorship of the needs assessment of the National Assembly conducted by Sir Michael Davies and the recommendations, which flowed there from 2005.
The inextricable link between governance and security was recognized, assessed, and addressed through the recommendations made.
The SSRAP had highlighted that “Guyana remains dangerously close to tipping point. The consequences of failure – of the various stakeholders to seize the moment, to engage and initiate decisive action – may well be the transformation of Guyana into a failed state and/or haven for international criminality, with all the regional and international implications that this may entail. This is a development that should be avoided at all costs and will entail some give and take and flexibility on all sides, in the interests of the long suffering people of Guyana.”
The then Bharrat Jagdeo administration’s had initially agreed and supported the recommendations and this led to the mobilization of funding; the identification and utilization of experts, and the activation of the National Assembly to pass Bills and Motions.
During the National Stakeholder consultations held at the then Office of the President (OP) in the aftermath of the Lusignan and Bartica massacres, Jagdeo extolled the virtues of the action plan as being the panacea of the ills within the sector.
But subsequently, the then head of the Presidential Secretariat Dr. Luncheon, said that the plan will not be implemented because of “ulterior motives” on the part of the British Government.
This led to speculation that the then administration was not interested in genuine, comprehensive and transparent reform of the sector.
Jun 18, 2021Kaieteur News – Veteran Guyanese cyclist, Raymond ‘Steely’ Newton, a member of We Stand United Cycle Club is set to compete at New York’s Premiere Professional/Amateur and Community...
Jun 18, 2021
Jun 18, 2021
Jun 18, 2021
Jun 18, 2021
Jun 17, 2021
Kaieteur News – Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, has lost power in a confidence motion in which the voting... more
Freedom of speech is our core value at Kaieteur News. If the letter/e-mail you sent was not published, and you believe that its contents were not libellous, let us know, please contact us by phone or email.
Feel free to send us your comments and/or criticisms.
Contact: 624-6456; 225-8452; 225-8458; 225-8463; 225-8465; 225-8473 or 225-8491.
Or by Email: [email protected] / [email protected]