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Antigua: Police force reshuffle underway

By Antigua Observer

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(ANTIGUA OBSERVER) – Over 80 police officers have been transferred from their posts with less than a week’s notice as the force continues to grapple with low morale and three major scandals, so far, this year.

Out of the 84 officers who were reassigned effective July 16, 28 were from the Protective Operations Office (POD) while 13 were from the Special Services Unit (SSU) which was staffed with 60 personnel.

OBSERVER media received a copy of the three-page list of transfers which was signed by Deputy Commissioner of Police Albert Wade, who was at the time acting as Commissioner of Police while the actual acting top cop, Atlee Rodney was overseas for work.

The list is dated July 11 but officers said they only noticed it posted at Police Headquarters on July 13.

The force is made up of over 700 officers, and the number is expected to climb as recruitment is currently underway.

The POD officers who were transferred, worked at the ministries and other government departments but most have been redeployed to St. John’s and other departments and stations in varying divisions ranging from A to D. A few were sent to work in maintenance as well.

Some officers said they were told the shake-up was to make the force more efficient and to “break up” some of the cliques that had formed and those who seemed to have become “too comfortable” in their posts.

Others said transfers were not unusual but noted that not that many officers are moved at the same time.

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