Gary Griffith speaks out on politicians making national security decisions
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On Monday, former Trinidad and Tobago Police Commissioner Gary Griffith addressed the issue of politicians making national security decisions during an appearance on the Hot 7 TV show “Good Morning St. Lucia”.
“The unfortunate thing I’ve seen, even in Trinidad and Tobago, is that national security decisions are made mostly by politicians,” he observed.
“And most politicians have no idea and there’s nothing wrong with that,” Griffith told host Shannon Lebourne.
“You are a politician, you are not a national security expert. It even started in Trinidad and Tobago. Our Prime Minister said that all it takes to be Minister of National Security is common sense and a cool head. It’s not true,” said Griffith, a former national security minister of Trinidad and Tobago.
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He said he expects people with some degree of expertise to fill these positions.
In the case of his native Trinidad and Tobago, he recalled that the country was most successful when Brigadier General Joe Theodore was Minister of National Security.
Théodore, now deceased, was minister from December 1995 to December 2000.
Griffith revealed that under Theodore’s watch, Trinidad and Tobago’s murder rate was below one hundred because the then minister understood the concept of national security and law enforcement.
In this regard, Griffith asserted that at CARICOM summits dealing with national security, it would be a matter of ideas as they are neither trained nor qualified.
“People who are experts in the field should drive it and then they become the guiding factors to give them guidance so that in CARICOM it can then become policy. This is not about reinventing the wheel. has some things that we have like IMPACS, which becomes a type of law enforcement agency with different weapons in the Caribbean where they can work together but have to turn into real operational plans,” he explained. .
And in the case of Saint Lucia, where a wave of violent crime continues, Griffith said he was confident the situation could improve.
“It can be done. The situation you have in Saint Lucia can turn around. It’s not impossible. It won’t be easy,” said Griffith, a former national security minister of Trinidad and Tobago. , to host Shannon Lebourne.
However, Griffith explained that the country needs to implement the concept of leadership, accountability, good management and performance measurement.
He also talked about the need to analyze data to develop the best and most effective tools for success.
Also, he mentioned successful models in other countries.
“It’s not a blueprint. You have to review and analyze the concerns of this country, and then you can use your limited national security resources effectively and efficiently,” explained the former T&T police chief. .
Griffith, credited with reducing crime in Trinidad and Tobago and increasing public confidence in the police during his tenure as police chief, said he would always be ready to help and support n any island in the Caribbean.
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