The lack of resources at the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force (RSLPF) has drawn the attention of not only ranks within the Force, but the general public, who considers it as a major issue.
But National Security Minister Victor Lacobiniere has said that while it is a reality on the ground, this is as a result of the economic climate in Saint Lucia over the past few years.
“The budget of my ministry has been steady for the past two years. Going into this budget it continues to be fairly stable. We have not seen any significant increases across the board,” he told the media.
In fact, Lacobiniere, said most of the capital projects were axed last year, which in his considered view, it will most likely be axed again this year. And that is purely based upon the economic climate.
The minister said agencies similar to the RSLPF have to find “innovative ways” to get the business done.
He used the Bordelais Correctional Facility (BCF) as an example, where they have moved to rehabilitate their farm with the assistance of members of the private sector.
“You also have to be careful in being creative. But there has to be some measure of creativity, greater level of efficiency, because there is also a lot of wastage in the public service,” he asserted.
Nevertheless, Lacobiniere explained that records over the past ten years indicate that the RSLPF have received reasonable financial and other types assistance, to help with their many programmes.
“In fact, they have got quite a bit, not just from the Americans, but my government has given them, motor vehicles and motor cycles, etc. This round the economy has been very tight and therefore it has been difficult to be able to keep it at the level we would like,” he remarked.
Lacobiniere said he is however confident that Prime Minister Dr. Kenny Anthony will continue, as he has done before, ease the burden on the main sectors even in this time of difficulty.