Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : May 23rd 2013 Contents A8
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Retired head of the
Public Service Reginald
Dumas has described
the Police Service Com-
mission (PSC) as "an
Dumas, who was the
feature speaker at yes-
terday s luncheon hosted
by the Trinidad Union
Club at Nicholas Towers,
Port-of-Spain, also spoke
on the operations of the
Teaching Service and the
Public Service Commis-
He said under the 1976
Constitution, the PSC
had the same powers as
the Public and Teaching
He added: "But all that
changed in 2006 and
later in 2007, and for per-
sonal and political rea-
sons, we have saddled
ourselves with an oper-
"Sections 122 and 123
of the Constitution tell
us how leaden-footed the
process has become."
He said to choose a
police commissioner or
deputy police commis-
sioner, the commission
must nominate people
and submit those names
to the President. That,
Dumas added, only
occurred after taxpayers
had paid huge sums to a
He said: "Only after
the Parliament approves
can the commission
make appointments. In
other words the commis-
sioner and his deputies
are now, in effect, polit-
"So also, by the way,
are the members of the
under the present dis-
pensation. Ask yourself
whether this is the right
way for the country to
go."He also asked whether
against that background,
acting Police Commis-
sioner Stephen Williams
showed discretion in
publicly praising former
national security minister
Jack Warner when Warn-
er had just resigned.
The short tenure of
former police commis-
sioner Dwayne Gibbs was
also brought to the fore
by Dumas, who said
there was unseemly pub-
lic squabbling over who
Stop the abuse and advantage.
This was the message sent to acting
Police Commissioner Stephen Williams
from residents of Beverley Hills, Laven-
tille, who claimed police and soldiers
abused them during a protest in the
area on Tuesday evening.
When a news team from the T&T
Guardian visited the community yes-
terday afternoon several men who were
involved in the protest said they were
still nursing wounds received during
clashes with the police and soldiers.
Some of the residents, including
women, showed media personnel bruis-
es to their faces and arms and provided
medical certificates to support their
claim they had been treated for the
injuries at the Port-of-Spain General
They all called on Williams to ensure
that there was an independent probe
into police brutality in the community
The residents claimed they did not
incite the confrontation but said it was
the officers who provoked them.
"When we start to protest, they (the
police) just come up here and start beat-
ing people and threatening to shoot
them," an unidentified resident said.
They said they began the protest after
a 19-year-old was arrested by police
on Tuesday. They claimed while in
police custody he was repeatedly beaten
and his dreadlocks hacked off.
A spokesman for the residents, who
only identified himself as Quasi, claimed
when the protest escalated the officers
began shooting at them.
"Them officers know we unarmed
and they just start to shoot at we. They
too trigger-happy," Quasi said.
They also denied residents shot at
officers during the exchange but claimed
the officers discharged more than 100
rounds of ammunition.
The residents said they were not
opposed to joint police/army patrols in
their community but were concerned
that some officers were abusing their
"We have no problem when the police
come up here and seize drugs and guns
and arrest people. That is their job. We
just don t want them to come here to
beat and intimidate people," Quasi said.
Since the incident, Senior Supt Carl-
ton Alleyne of the Inter-Agency Task
Force (IATF) has been assigned to inves-
tigate the allegations. He and other
investigators visited on Tuesday night
and interviewed the residents.
The teenager who was at the centre
of the incident, who asked to remain
unidentified, told the T&T Guardian
the police took him to the Besson Street
Police Station and released him after a
couple of hours.
"As soon as I walk out of the station,
men from East Dry River attack me and
beat me. I run for my life," he said.
Laventille residents to
top cop: Stop abuse
had the legal right to
terminate his contract.
He asked: "Was it
the director of person-
Was it the commis-
And yet Section 123
(1) of the Constitution
seemed clear in that it
gives the commission
the power to remove
from office and exercise
over the commissioner
and his deputies.
Saying the Police
Service had found itself
in "asininity," Dumas
added that the entire
process had become
"And this in a period
of high crime, when
citizens expect their
fears to be speedily
allayed," he added.
PSC an operational
Retired head of the Public Service Reginald Dumas, second from left, chats
with former ANSA McAL board member Anthony Beaubrun, right, and
consultant Ruthven Jack, president of the Union Club, after yesterday's
luncheon. PHOTO: MARCUS GONZALES
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