Basseterre, St. Kitts, 19th March 2015 (MiyVue.com) – The Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force has broken silence on comments made by its own commissioner of police during a local radio station interview.
Commissioner of Police Celvin Walwyn stated in a radio interview that the demotion of Rosemary Isles-Roberts from superintendent to her substantive post of inspector was an act of discrimination and victimization that he associates with the recently installed Team Unity administration.
In a new twist to the story, the Police Force issued a statement characterizing the commissioner’s broadcasted statements as “unfortunate,” and indicated that the transcript of the interview has been sent to the Police Service Commission for “attention and appropriate action”.
Nevertheless, the Force’s own statement addressed one particular issue raised by the commissioner, who claimed that Inspector Isles Roberts was victimized by her removal from superintendent status. It takes to task the commissioner’s action in promoting the inspector, and it outlines the procedures that should have been taken.
According to the police information, the commissioner “cannot” promote an officer above the rank of a station sergeant, noting that the procedure to promote an inspector up to the rank of superintendent of police is governed by section 12 of the Police Act, No. 6 of 2003.
The statement further clarifies the circumstances surrounding the promotion issue.
“On November 25, 2014, the commissioner of police wrote to the Police Service Commission seeking approval for Inspector Rosemary Isles-Roberts to be promoted and appointed to the rank of superintendent. Neither the Police Service Commission nor the Governor-General has had the benefit of any recommendation for her; hence she was never promoted nor appointed to Acting Superintendent of Police.
“On March 5, 2015, Inspector Rosemary Isles-Roberts was asked to wear the appropriate badges of rank for inspector, which is her substantive rank, which is the normal procedure in this case,” the Police Force statement explains.
The Police Force is contending that there is no proof of Ms. Isles-Roberts’ promotion, and it was done in an inappropriate manner.
“Any appointment in the Police Force of a person to the rank of superintendent, assistant superintendent and inspector shall be made by the Governor-General, acting in accordance with the recommendation of the Commission," the statement pointed out.
According to the law enforcement body, Commissioner of Police Walwyn would have been required to make the appropriate recommendation in writing to the Police Service Commission via the permanent secretary in the ministry responsible.
“If the Police Service Commission is in approval with the recommendation of the commissioner of police, the recommendation is then sent on to the Governor-General for his approval,” the statement informs.
Based on the information, the last stage is an appointment in the form of an instrument signed by the Governor-General, all of which is reflected in the Civil Service P/8 Form. This appointment may take the form of an acting appointment or it may be a confirmation,” the Force disclosed.
The Police Force statement reminds the public that they are a professional organization, bound by the Constitution and the laws of the Federation.
“We operate within the four corners of the Law. We do not condone nor practice discrimination or victimization; rather, we promote equality for all,” states the Police Force information.
Rosemary Isles-Roberts joined the Police Force on October 8, 1996, as a constable, before being moved up the ranks to corporal in 2009. In 2011 Roberts was again promoted, this time she gained the rank of sergeant being bumped up to acting-superintendent.
To date, Isles-Roberts has had some eighteen (18) years of service in the law enforcement agency.