The island’s top cop today warned of forces within the ranks of the Royal Barbados Police Force (RBPF) seeking to cause division, as he announced the first round of appointments in six years.
Amid reports of a group of lawmen being disgruntled at being omitted from the promotions announced this afternoon, Commissioner of Police Tyrone Griffith cautioned his officers against allowing “a small core of persons” to divide the Force.
“There are many rumours [but] let me say up front that all you members here this afternoon that are being elevated, were recommended by this Commissioner and the Board for elevation,” he told the 72 police officers who were presented with their letters of appointments during a ceremony at the District ‘A’ Police Station.
“But I have to also say there were other members who were also recommended and I am not in a position at this time to say whether they, too, will be elevated and when . . . only to say that there were other members of the Force who were seen in a very similar light.”
Griffith further urged members of the RBPF not to be side-tracked by detractors, bearing in mind that the promoted officers did not have the power to elevate themselves.
“There is a small core of persons who from time to time seek to divide this beautiful organization, and it is for you and those of you who are not elevated, who consider yourselves deserving of elevation, not to allow that small core of people to divide you,” the police chief said.
He added that the competition for promotion is always very keen, given that the majority of RBPF members work extremely hard to ensure that Barbados and visitors are safe.
“So the challenge is always difficult to determine who should be elevated. But we do a very thorough job and we take a number of factors into consideration,” Griffith said, adding that he hoped the administration of the Force got it right at the end of the day.
The beaming top cop, who was flanked by Assistant Commissioners William Yearwood, Colvin Bishop and Lila Strickland, congratulated the new ranks, telling them the Force would be better off after today because they would do “exceedingly well”.
In his “send-off” remarks, Assistant Commissioner Yearwood, who is in charge of operations, reminded the law enforcers that he depended on them to execute their duties across the island.
“Receiving a promotion should be something that inspires you to continue in the vein in which you first came to this Force. I always told any gathering of police officers that I address, that when I put on this uniform, a uniform of the Royal Barbados Police Force, I always have the same feeling I had with my course mates in barracks,” the senior police officer said.
Fifty Constables were promoted to Sergeant, 16 Sergeants to Station Sergeant and six Station Sergeants to Inspector.