Basseterre, St. Kitts, October 14, 2018 – Seven days after social media reported that the Barbados-based Regional Security System (RSS) was on its way to Basseterre, that a third batch of soldiers/police officers arrived on Wednesday October 10th and were being sworn in on Thursday October 11th as Special Constables of the Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force, Prime Minister Dr. Timothy Harris has broken his silence on the issue.
Dr. Harris’ also remained silent even after Leader of the Opposition, Dr. Denzil L. Douglas had published a letter sent to OECS Chairman, Dr. Ralph Gonsalves that stated that Dr. Harris is abusing his position and authority and is seeking to use the RSS to buttress the local forces, which he has deliberately emasculated to assist him in his campaign of dictatorship and terror.
The St. Lucia Times also reported on October 12, that St. Lucia’s Acting Commissioner of Police, Milton Desir had confirmed that six St. Lucia officers were already in St. Kitts and Nevis and “are expected to spend three weeks in St. Kitts and Nevis in the first instance.”
Comes, Saturday 13 October and Dr. Harris confirms a week old report that his Team Unity Government had requested the deployment of RSS forces in St. Kitts and Nevis.
Dr. Harris also told the Nation that there was a shortage of manpower.
In his address, Dr. Harris stopped short of reminding listeners that since taking office in 2015, over 100 police officers and soldiers have joined the Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force and the St. Kitts-Nevis Defence Force.
On July 19, 2016, 30 police officers joined the Police Force after successfully completing the course. On December 12, 2017, 34 new recruits officially joined the Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force and in May this year, 29 young men from Grenada and St. Vincent and the Grenadines answered the call to serve as officers in the Police Force and on arrival at the Robert L. Bradshaw International Airport on Wednesday, May 9, he personally greeted the second batch of recruits from St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
In April 2016, 13 new recruits joined the St. Kitts-Nevis Defence Force and in December that same year, 28 new soldiers also joined the ranks of the St. Kitts-Nevis Defence Force.
In August 2018, Dr. Harris also announced he had recruited two senior-level officers out of Jamaica to serve in different capacities with the local police force. They were retired Detective Inspector of Police of the Jamaica Constabulary Force, Marcia Garrick and retired Senior Superintendent, Colin Pinnock.
He said the RSS will remain in St. Kitts and Nevis for as long as necessary until the security forces advise that their presence is no longer required.
But it was in August this year that Dr. Harris sent a press release around the world praising Stewart Saunders for “crime control in St. Kitts and Nevis” stating that Saunders “possesses over 40 years of distinguished public service in Jamaica” and he was “satisfied Saunders has added value to the work.”