The cops, who solved the murder case of the money changer and his daughter, got the shock of their lives when they learnt that they were the recipients of the highest monetary award for GPF’s Annual Awards Ceremony.
Each was awarded $200,000. Inspector Devon Lowe collected on their behalf.
The money changer, Aaron Latchman, and his daughter, Ariann Latchman, were robbed and shot in cold blood and rocked Guyana’s foundation,
The ranks of the Major Crime Unit ‘A’ and ‘C’ Divisions respectively were commended for the speed and the manner in which the case was handled. It was a matter of days after the killing that arrests were being made and questioning done.
On Monday five suspects were taken to court and charged after statements were given which implicated them in the act.
Acting Crime Chief Michael Kingston was also congratulated for the manner in which he assumed his new role and operated within its reins.
On Sunday, the Fallen Heroes were remembered for their sacrifices while executing their line of duty, and they were honoured with wreaths that were laid at the monument of Fallen Heroes after which their relatives were invited to have breakfast at the Police Officer’s Mess Hall.
However efforts of the living were not forgotten and yesterday the Force hosted its Annual Awards Ceremony at which a whopping $19.5M was distributed to various ranks from various departments for a number of patriotic acts.
The ceremony which is held every year is a way of giving back to ranks who lived up to and surpassed their expected duties. It is also as a means of motivation for the others who may be lagging behind.
Master of Ceremonies, Deputy Commissioner Administration, Paul Williams, said, “This is the day that the Lord has made and we will rejoice, because he is good. He is favourable to us as it relates to the weather; he is favourable to us as it relates to life, health, prosperity and good friendship.”
He added that it was a commemoration of one of their usual activities done in observance of the anniversary. However that particular activity would be considered as remarkable and special because it is in observance of the Force’s 180th anniversary.
Deputy Commissioner Williams then noted that the force had 180 years to contribute to numerous histories, records and characters.
“History stands on the basis of time, space, events and characters. The Guyana Police Force is the only law enforcement agency, that serves this nation along with other sister agencies. Power has been vested in it along the basis of the disciplinary aspect.”
The force continues to set the example and lead in terms of ensuring that there is a safe and secure environment, he said. He then urged ranks to remain resolute to their oath and task of duty.
Commissioner Leslie James, said, “There is a saying that there is a positive correlation between the growth of an object and the attention it garners. This analogy is also true [with] regards to actions and outcomes. Recognition and or reward for positive actions invariably lead to more positive actions.”
The reason for the ceremony was to reward positive action as they were there to reward stellar performances of policemen and women, who were the people that allowed the force to maintain its forward thrust, the Commissioner said.
These people proceed beyond the call of duty, and clearly understood their roles, functions and responsibilities, he added.
“As serving members of the Guyana Police Force, indeed this event has long been a practice of the force’s administration and is now a prominent feature on our calendar of anniversary activities.”
He further noted that he is pleased to announce that the force has paid out in excess of $154M to deserving ranks.
Yesterday they paid out $19.5M and another portion is to be paid out later in the year. The awards and recognition are never in vain, for the records still show that all recipients will continue to excel and venture beyond the call of duty.
Awards were given to Community Policing Groups, Individuals, Branches and Divisions. A total of 34 Community Policing Groups received awards for their outstanding contributions.
Seven of those groups were from the ‘A’ Division, six from ‘B’ Division, six from ‘C’ Division, five from ‘D’ Division, five from ‘E’ Division and six from ‘G’ Division.
In the individual category within the Community Policing Groups and Rural Constables attached to the Neighbourhood Policing Department 33 awards were handed out.
‘A’ Division copped ten awards, ‘B’ Division eight, ‘C’ Division five, ‘D’ Division six and ‘E’ Division four.
Individual ranks were awarded for their bravery be it in regards of discovery of ammunition, weapons and narcotics during raids, outstanding investigative skills and arrests of suspects which led to them being charged.
A few such cases involved the two ranks at the mining camp raid last February when a cache of ammo and guns was discovered and the suspects were arrested and charged.
In January a rank was on joint patrol with the GDF in the Cuyuni River and conducted a search on open vessel with 17 occupants. Two Venezuelan nationals each had in their possession a grenade. They were arrested and charged. Those three ranks were rewarded with $100,000 each.
Other ranks were rewarded with sums ranging from $58,000 to $100,000 for their accomplishment in similar cases. Some were promoted and awarded at the same time.
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