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PM: National security fine

Prime Minister Freundel Stuart has assured Barbadians that the economic crisis will not negatively affect Barbados’ national security.

Stuart gave this assurance in Parliament yesterday afternoon as he introduced a supplementary to be made for the sum of $4.1 million to cover a number of important obligations attached to the Ministry of Defence and National Security.

“One of the decisions that we have taken in Government is that whatever other perils that we may have to face in the context of the stringencies through which we are now passing that the area of national security would not be up for compromise.

“We have taken a very firm position that the area of national security should be as far as possible exempt from any of the stringencies that would have to be imposed in the interest of the national economy so there is no need to fair in that regard,” he said.

Stuart said that the supplementary was expected to be divided in various areas of the ministry which included the Barbados Defence Force (BDF) and the Regional Security System which is headquartered in Barbados and sustained by subscriptions from member of governments from the Eastern Caribbean and “friendly” international governments.

The head of the Ministry of Defence also offered strong commendation for its work in protecting island’s people, land and sea over the years. Stuart said that fortunately, whenever symptoms of indiscipline, bad behavior or corruption surfaced they have been swiftly dealt with, so that the integrity of the force was never comprised.

“ And that is what can recommend the Barbados Defence Force to all Barbadians and the people of the Caribbean. I really have to say that the Barbados Defence Force has cooperated well and has also been very clear in what its requirements have been and the Government has not been slow putted at all in ensuring that the force has not been properly resourced,” he said.

Stuart added: “It is a very disciplined force and has been very ably led since it has been established. I think Barbados has been very lucky to have the quality of men available to it since it has been established and its upper ranks have been many and women of exemplary integrity and character, the Honourable Member for The City not excluded. The force has been fortunate in that regard and we continue to try to attract the best elements in the society to the Barbados Defence Force”.

The Prime Minister also praised the satisfactory work of the RSS and expressed gratitude to international governments which included the United States, Britain and Canada.

“I would like to thank those governments and any other government that has shown interest not only in the equipping of the system but in the training of the personnel,” he said.

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