Gloomy road ahead for increased police salaries

Last Updated on Wednesday, 24 August 2016, 14:51 by Denis Chabrol

Despite an ongoing brain-drain of trained members of the Guyana Police Force (GPF), Public Security Minister Khemraj Ramjattan on Wednesday ruled out those law enforcement personnel receiving higher salaries because other government employees would also demand increases.

“It is very difficult at this stage to increase salaries. The minute you start increasing policemen salaries, the nurses are going to jump on our backs, public servants will go, the teachers will want increases,” he told reporters.

The A Partnership for National Unity+ Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) coalition had promised during the 2015 general elections campaign to increase police salaries by 20 percent. Now Ramjattan, who is the AFC’s leader, said higher salaries is hinged on improved economic performance. “Unless we have a better day and we are hoping that we are soon going to have a better day. With rice and sugar doing so badly these days, we really at this time can’t do anything but to plead with them that a better day will come and let them join the police force and struggle it out,” he said

With the Guyana Police Force (GPF) short of its full strength by 1,000 persons, Ramjattan said that by the time a number of them would have been trained they obtain visas and they migrate or they get better paying jobs.

Finance Minister, Winston Jordan has already said that government does not have sufficient money to keep the coalition’s election promise to pay members of the Guyana Police Force.