Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : January 16th 2015 Contents A7
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Chief of Defence Staff Major
Gen Kenrick Maharaj is to get a
one-year extension as Cabinet
yesterday agreed to increase the
retirement age for members of
the Defence Force by three years.
So said National Security Min-
ister Gary Griffith during yester-
day s post-Cabinet news confer-
ence at the Office of the Prime
Minister, St Clair.
Maharaj reaches his compulsory
retirement age of 55 this month.
Griffith said: "Because of this,
there would be the extension of
service for Major General Kenrick
Maharaj just for a period of one
He said various officers in the
Defence Force retired at age 45,
47, 50 and 55. He noted that under
the existing requirement the
Defence Force was losing "not just
a few good men but many good
men and women" because of the
early retirement age.
Griffith noted that internation-
ally, the compulsory retirement
age was much higher as in some
countries the retirement age was
as high as 60 years for certain
He said the manpower strength
of the army was being affected by
the existing retirement age and
the move was intended to "assist
in dealing with the manpower
shortage we have right now."
He said the existing early retire-
ment age may also discourage cit-
izens from choosing a career in
According to Griffith, there was
a greater demand for the Defence
Force in the wake of the crime sit-
uation in the country.
He said the role was "not just
to protect us from external aggres-
sion but also as an aid to civil
power and to support the police."
Griffith added while it was
unfortunate that there were about
16 murders in the first week of the
year, in the past week there had
only been about four or five.
He said the success was due to
"the increased alert state, proper
policing, good law enforcement
and providing the deterrent."
Griffith noted in 2014 the coun-
try had the lowest level of serious
crimes in 31 years while five years
before that it experienced the high-
est level in its history.
He said this year the Govern-
ment would seek to "take away
the perception and fear of crime.
"We intend to crack down on
the homicide rate (which) is unac-
ceptable," he added.
He said the majority of the
homicides were gang-related "so
we know exactly where the prob-
lem lies. It means, however, that
a law-abiding citizen is safer now
than he/she has ever been in 31
See Page A9.
As retirement age extended...
Soldiers get three
more years to serve
Former vice president
of the National Joint
(NJAC) Anum Bankole
will be cremated on
Tuesday after a funeral
service at Clark and Bat-
too on Tragarete Road,
Bankole, a member of
NJAC for 45 years, passed
away on Sunday.
The number drawn on Crime
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You have until 3 pm today to
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Bankole's funeral on Tuesday
In a release earlier this
week, Minister in the
Ministry of National
Security Embau Moheni
said he was saddened by
Bankole s death.
"I am deeply saddened
by the passing of Brother
Anum Bankole, who has
served the NJAC and by
extension the national
community selflessly for
the past 45 years,"
He said he had served
NJAC in several capaci-
ties including that of vice
"He was always very
also served the organi-
sation as community
relations officer with dis-
tinction for a number of
"Our nation has lost a
dedicated and devoted
stalwart who epitomised
the qualities of caring,
commitment and sacri-
fice in giving 45 years of
unstinting and selfless
service to his nation and
his people," Moheni said.
He said Bankole s love
of the arts, sports and of
people had made T&T a
richer, healthier and more
compassionate place for
all its citizens.
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