By Caribbean News Global contributor
CASTRIES, St Lucia – Commissioner of the Royal St Lucia Police Force (RSLPF) Milton Desir and his supporting cast of Gazetted Officers should be sent packing for all the right reasons, not the least, the deteriorating apparatus of the RSLPF, the disappearance of law and order and escalating crime in Saint Lucia.
In more trusting societies, police chiefs have resigned over their handling of public protests and/or events that cause major disruptions to the free movement of people, goods and services and failure to keep the country safe.
Officers of the RSLPF take on the responsibility to serve and protect the public. “To provide a professional policing service and in partnership with all communities to create a safer environment for all people in Saint Lucia.”
The deplorable state of public safety, administration and operation of the RSLPF is the direct responsibility of commissioner Desir and not that of the political class [politicians and minister (s)].
The damaged relations, miscommunication and optics with senior leadership reflects the compromised RSLPF’s inability to cope and put forward a solid operational plan to law enforcement in Saint Lucia.
The unprecedented national security crisis in Saint Lucia was not unforeseen, albeit gross incompetence to make available expertise, acquire enforcement tools, and a new integrated command centre.
The failures of the RSLPF is in full view – it is time to end this embarrassment.
Sources both inside and outside the RSLPF can validate a crisis laden RSLPF and the non-prescriptive rationale for decision making; beyond concerns over career sustainability. This has placed tremendous strain on officers.
Concerning the crime situation in Saint Lucia, prime minister Philip J. Pierre has addressed this as ‘alarming’, adding: “The police will be expected to do their duty in causing a reduction in crime. We will prioritize spending on law and order. Law enforcement agencies like the police will be resourced with modern tools for crime detection.”
Resource requirements including 11 vehicles, personal hardware, etc, is currently being made available to the RSLPF by the government of Saint Lucia. This is duty-bound, a prerequisite of the state to provide [ not charitable groups and special interest ].
However, this is not enough. The operational mechanism for the deployment and use of police vehicles intertwine with administrative efficiencies, initiating policy, plans and programmes for the operation readiness.
Therefore, there should be a sense of fierce urgency to decommission the paralysed components at the front line of the RSLPF. This has the proponent view to reforming the image and public view, unsettle the disrupters, even though it is the recommendation that the RSLPF should be “disbanded in much that same as Minneapolis disbanded its police department seven years ago.”
Last week, addressing a ceremony to hand-over 11 new vehicles to the RSLPF, commissioner Desir said: “Put down the guns. If you cannot do it willingly I could assure you the police officers will cause you to do it and I make no bones about it.”
“… I submit that this escapade by a minority of cowardly un-stately, non-law-abiding citizens has to stop. It must stop, and therefore, it is critical that we have the necessary tools to continue to mount the fight against these criminals to restore peace and tranquillity among our citizens,” Desir expressed, without addressing the “so-called gangs” that presumable have informants and intelligence to rival the RSLPF.
Analyzing commissioner Desir’s comments, a source said: “ Not enough is being done, fast enough and well enough to find that threshold effect to support a reduction of crime and lawlessness. The outcomes add to evidence that requires an improvement in public trust, safety, service and value.”
There is also a misnomer by policymakers to conjure “the sacrifices and risk that the RSLPF make to maintain law and order.” More practical, it is vital to consider that sacrifices, risk and reward comes with the territory of every occupation. The RSLPF is no different.
And besides, policymakers should be more adaptable to thought process and the necessities before uttering speech of their lesser competence. This is not a critique, but an observation and opportunity for the continued readiness of the government to plan a redeployment of the RSLPF.
The result should be a holistic methodology to national security.
The RSLPF  malignant culture is tainted, not the least by Operation Restore Confidence (ORC) and still subject to the Leahy Law is unfit for modern-day policing, law enforcement and futuristic systems.