Government to Explore Transformation of SSU to National Defence Force

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Special Services Unit (SSU) on parade
Prime Minister Allen Chastanet

Prime Minister Allen Chastanet today posted on his Facebook page, the following statement, made against the backdrop of the record number of homicides this weekend which has been referred to as Bloody Sunday.

“Our Government’s goal is to create a safe, peaceful environment where the rule of law prevails; where persons can proceed with their daily lives confident in the ability and capacity of the state to protect them; have confidence in the justice system to adjudicate fairly and consistently; where the causes and manifestations of crime are vigorously challenged; and where there is a total commitment to safeguarding the rights of the citizen.

We will explore the removal of the Special Services Unit (SSU) from the structure of the Police Force and transform it into a National Defence Force. Though such a force is usually associated with addressing insurrection, there is a much wider mandate which it can fulfill including response to natural and man-made disasters. It can also be a vehicle through which a programme of National Service can be instituted and contribute to introducing a culture of discipline in our society, promote community service and generate employment.

Parallel to this, the Cadet Corps will be re-invigorated and introduced at all secondary schools. This initiative will provide initial opportunities for screening potential Police and Defence Force recruits.
Reforms to the prison system will include the construction of half-way houses which may also be utilized to explore the establishment of a farm labour programme.”

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