Barbados Labour Party representatives and others questioning the Police Service Commission’s authority to act as it did in relation to Commissioner of Police Darwin Dottin are misleading the public.
Government Senator Verla De Peiza today urged Barbadians not to be fooled by the Opposition’s “consternation and the stirring up” because under the law “the Police Service Commission had every right to do what they did”
She was speaking during debate on thePolice Complaints Authority (Validation) Bill in the Upper House.
“Whether you like it or not it is the responsibility with which they (PSC) are charged by the Governor General,” she said in a presentation aimed at debunking statements by BLP spokesmen including Senator Wilfred Abrahams.
“The first thing that the public needs to know is that the Police Service Commission does not derive its authority from an act of Parliament, it is rooted in the Constitution of Barbados, it trumps every piece of legislation that comes thereafter. That is the first thing that needs to be made abundantly clear, it has nothing to do with the Police Act,” the attorney-at-law said.
“Also, the Police Service Commission by Section 91 of the Constitution cannot have as a member any person who is a member of the House or a public servant. The Police Service Commission by Section 96 is charged with the responsibility of appointing, removing, and disciplining police officers.”
“It is only the Police Service Commission that has the authority to recommend to the Governor General that a Commissioner of Police be removed, that is the correct manner in which it is done.”
De Peiza also said the Commissioner of Police “has nothing to do with the appointment of officers under him, it is not part of his responsibility and any good lawyer and good person, who stands saying that they are representing the public owes them a duty to inform them and not misinform them”.
“Persons from the other place and persons from this place simply because they are in Opposition need to respect the authority that people see them to have, … there is that responsibility on them not … to give the impression that something untoward and underhanded is underfoot in Barbados because nothing could be further from the truth,” the Democratic Labour Party representative stated.
“I challenge the other side in any event to find a provision in the Police Act that deals with any such matter because the Police Act deals with the day to day management, operational issues, that is what the Police Act deals with and nothing to do with the appointment of officers. That is found in the Constitution.” (SC)
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