by Shawn Cumberbatch
Government is moving to fill a major vacancy in the senior administration of the Royal Barbados Police Force.
And Barbados TODAY investigations have confirmed that rather than opting for the straight promotion of a senior lawman, the post of Deputy Commissioner of Police is being advertised throughout the public service.
With former Deputy Commissioner of Police Bertie Hinds now officially retired, the Chief Personnel Officer has written all Permanent Secretaries and heads of government departments inviting them to inform all of their “suitably qualified officers” of the opportunity.
While stating there were “no statutory qualifications” for the important law enforcement job, the CPO in a December 12, 2012 sent to the senior ranks of the civil service made it clear that attributes including “a degree … training in management or executive development at a recognised police college or academy (and) completion of the strategic command course at a recognised police staff college” were “desirable”.
“The selection process will be based on merit and may involve interviews, oral or written tests, or any other method of selection approve by the Service Commissions,” the CPO’s correspondence stated.
“Only suitably qualified applicants will be considered for selection. A priority list arising out of the selection process, approved by the appointing authority, will be valid for a period of two years in keeping with Section 6 of the First Schedule of the Recruitment and Employment Code of the Public Service Act, CAP. 29.
“Officers will be assessed on … relevant qualifications and professional training, experience, assessment method approved by the Public Service Commission, special reports or the appraisal forms from the Performance Review and Development System, (and) general suitability.
“It should be noted that the PRDS forms will be required for those officers whose ministry (or) department is presently using this method of assessment,” the circular added.
The CPO also told permanent secretaries and heads of departments that “persons who are not serving officers, who have been short listed for interviews, must provide a written testimonial from their current or last employer”.
After going on pre-retirement leave from September 26 to December 31, Hinds became a civilian on January 1, 2013.
The current Acting Deputy Commissioner of Police is Seymour Cumberbatch.
Whoever becomes the RBPF’s second in command will receive a “permanent and pensionable” appointment, with a monthly salary of more than $9,000 ($109,114 annually), and nearly $1,600 in monthly allowances ($19,109 yearly).
In addition to assisting the Commissioner of Police with the force’s overall management and control, including coordinating the work of assistant commissioners and the administrative and operational department, the new deputy commissioner will be specifically responsible for “all major force operations, policing of national events, the Office of Professional Responsibility, which deals with complaints against lawmen and their conduct, strategic direction, standing orders, operational and administrative procedures, RPBF publications including orders.
The CPO said the individual would also be responsible for the police band, RPBF “organisations”, the organisation’s audits and standards, ammunition, explosives, other controlled and restricted items and counter narcotics.
A source familiar with the recruitment process told Barbados TODAY that while the move to fill the vacant post of deputy commissioner was being done in accordance with Section 2 of the Recruitment and Employment Code of the Public Service Act, it was “expected” that a current serving senior police officer would be appointed to the senior post “given the peculiar requirements and specialised nature of the job”.
Attorney General Adriel Brathwaite is already on record as saying that a non Barbadian would not be filling the post.
“Barbados has such a cadre of very young, able-bodied competent police officers that I do not see, certainly in the short to medium term, any reason for us to consider looking outside for management†in the Royal Barbados Police Force,” he said late last year.
Current Commissioner of Police Darwin Dottin was appointed to his post in September 2003. firstname.lastname@example.org