President David Granger, today, announced that following consultations with the Leader of the Opposition, Mr. Bharrat Jagdeo at State House, Mr. Leslie Albert James will now serve as the Commissioner of Police with immediate effect.
The Commander of Chief of the Armed Forces also noted that Mr. James will be supported by four deputy commissioners who are Mr. Lyndon Alves, Ms. Maxine Graham, Mr. Nigel Hoppie and Mr. Paul Williams. These appointments will also take immediate effect as of August 30, 2018.
In an invited comment following the conclusion of the meeting, President Granger said that the four deputies will be responsible for four areas of the Force; these are Operations, Administration, Law Enforcement and Special Branch/ Intelligence.
“My intention is that the four deputies will be responsible for various aspects of the Police Force, for example, Operations, Administration, Law Enforcement and Special Branch or Intelligence. What we have done today is we have not only appointed a Police Commissioner but we have also improved the architecture of the Police Force so that instead of having a flat structure, we now have clearly defined responsibilities in those four deputy commissioners. So, things will be better. I am sure there will be better performance in those areas and other officers can now look forward to, in due course, filling those appointments. It will help to enhance the specialisation of the Police Force. It will help to spur the career mobility of officers and I am convinced that the efficiency of the Police Force as a whole will be enhanced,” the Head of State said.
The President noted that it is his expectation to meet with the new Commissioner and deputies today where discussions will take place on the appointments to each of the four areas identified.
“I was not interested in having a foreigner head the Guyana Police Force. I felt that we had local talent. I think the process has resulted in the best five being selected to lead the force and I will be meeting later today with the Commissioner and deputy commissioners. I think this is the best outcome and they are all fit and proper persons to lead the Police Force,” he said.
Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo met with President David Granger today for consultations on the appointment of Police Commissioner and Deputy Commissioners.
Mr. Jagdeo at a press conference this afternoon said during the meeting with the President, he did not offer any objections or any particular views on any of the persons the President has indicated that he wants to serve in the top office of the Guyana Police Force.
“I said to the President that I did not have an adverse position on any of the nominees”, Jagdeo said.
Mr. Jagdeo said during this morning’s consultations, he asked the President about a “Geography test” that he heard was given to the Assistant Commissioners during their interview for the Top Cop job. He said the President explained that it was not a Geography test, but rather a General Knowledge test to get an understanding of the candidates’ knowledge of national issues.
Jagdeo said he also inquired about the non-selection of Acting Police Commissioner David Ramnarine for the position, since there might have been an assumption that he would have gotten the job, having acted in the position for close to a year.
The Opposition Leader said the President indicated to him that he did not choose Ramnarine because of a specific issue, but he did not share that issue with him.
Assistant Commissioner Leslie James has served the Police Force in a number of commanding positions and has also served as the Crime Chief.