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SOCU funding coming – Granger

SOCU Headquarters

SOCU Headquarters

With criticism about the lack of resources for the Special and Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) surfacing, President David Granger has assured that better days are ahead for the unit as funding as allocated in the 2016 Budget has been approved.

On Wednesday, UK expert Sam Sittlington said that the lack of resources at SOCU would dearly affect the work being put out by the unit when one considers the unit’s human resources and the workload.

He said that while SOCU is currently conducting 285 investigations with less than ten persons working at the agency.

“SOCU currently manage a total of 285 investigations, 59 of those are live investigations of which immediate action is required and the remaining held until further intelligence becomes available. Prioritising is essential,” said Sittlington.

He pointed out too that SOCU is expecting further large NICIL type investigations to reach their doors in the coming weeks and the workload cannot be sustained within the current staff.

Questioned by Demerara Waves on Thursday, President Granger indicated that the Appropriation Bill has received his signature and it is now in the hands of the line Ministry and the Guyana Police Force to utilize the funds.

“Money should be released shortly it is up to the Minister of Public Security and the Commissioner of Police to ensure that the money is spent for the reasons which it has been budgeted,” said the President.’

Already, he pointed out, there have been noticeable changes in the operations of the Guyana Police and SOCU as a unit.

Some $40M was budgeted under the Ministry of the Presidency for the operations of the Unit. (Jomo Brusheildon Paul)

  • Emile_Mervin

    Anytime a government entity is going to be funded, it first has to be legally recognized by Parliament. Was SOCU ever legislated into existence? If so, when?

    To me, SOCU was a PPP brainchild that was actually set up under the police to reward army officer, Lt. Col. Leslie James, for his contribution to the Rodney CoI. He was appointed to the rank of Assistant Commissioner, but SOCU was not even necessary since the police already had a Major Crimes Unit and the Ministry of Home Affairs had access to the Financial Intelligence Unit.

    After the FIU failed yo make money laundering busts, much to the cinsternation of the CFATF, Rohee touted the idea of the FIU relying on police officers to do its work. Next thing we know, SOCU was set up and, it too, would be relying on police and army officers to do its work.

    Guyana has a population of less than 800,000, so why do we need all these different arms of intelligence to fight financial crimes: SARU, SOCU, FIU and MCU, and none of them seems ready for anything?

    SOCU made some money laundering busts, which was what the FIU is supposed to be doing, so what is the status if the FIU? See, Granger left the government to a ser a blow hards and when they mess up he has to come with a broom, dust pan, mop and bucket and try to clean up. He