Police officers here are hoping the appointment of Tyrone Griffith as the top cop in the Royal Barbados Police Force (RBPF) will be the beginning of a wave of appointments of officers in acting positions.
The Barbados Police Association (BPA) today said a staggering 200 cops had been acting in senior positions for much too long, some of them up to two ranks higher than their substantive posts.
BPA President Constable Mervin Grace told Barbados TODAY while they welcomed the appointment of Griffith, who had acted as commissioner for just over four years, it was time for officers of lower rank to get their just due.
“We don’t have any major issues with it [Griffith’s appointment]. Actually, I would say we welcome the appointment. [However], we would like all the other appointments to come forward with some haste because we have a number of persons that have been acting . . . and we need to have those appointments filled. It has the Force a bit stagnated,” Grace said, stressing that he hoped the commissioner’s confirmation would open the flood gates for all those who are either acting or have been recommended for promotion.
Grace said the number of acting positions “is so great I can’t tell you”, revealing that there were officers acting from as low down the ranks as sergeant up to the third highest post of assistant commissioner of police.
In addition, he said, the RBPF was short of over 100 police officers, making the acting situation even more burdensome.
“I think the major set of acting [positions] is in the lower ranks. It is so large I think it is a waste of time checking it . . . .It just needs rectifying,” he said, adding that “it could be anywhere in that general vicinity .
“We have a number of persons acting from the rank of sergeant straight up the ranks of senior superintendent . . . actually up to assistant commissioners . . . some persons even acting two ranks above their own particular substantive rank and those things need to be rectified with some haste. The Force needs regularizing,” Grace warned.
The BPA head said his organization expected Griffith to maintain the same high standards that he had been demonstrating since his acting appointment in June 2013.
“It’s just a formality, really. It solidifies the fact that he is actually the commissioner of police. There is no major change that we are expecting. We have been working with him all the while as the acting commissioner and we intend to work with him the same way now that he is appointed,” he said, adding that the officers shared Griffith’s standards and were happy to work with him.
On January 11, this year 56 officers were appointed across the ranks of sergeant, station sergeant, inspector, assistant superintendent, superintendent, senior superintendent and assistant commissioner of police.
Griffith, 62, joined the Force in 1975.