There has been a 39 per cent reduction in serious crimes in Tobago, National Security Minister Gary Griffith said on Friday.
Griffith made the statement at the heads of national security meeting which took place at the Mt Irvine Bay Hotel. The meeting had previously been postponed twice. Griffith said his ministry, along with the Tobago House of Assembly, will collaborate to ensure crime on the island remains at a minimum. “There has been a 39 per cent reduction in serious crimes, there has been an improvement in the detection rate in Tobago from 25 per cent. We have had more police officers assigned to Tobago in 2014, and there will be a further increase that will occur in the very near future, with an additional 150 SRP’s being assigned to Tobago,” Griffith said.
The policing of Tobago’s waters is also high on the government’s agenda for Tobago, as a coast guard base is expected to be constructed at Charlotteville.
Within six months Griffith plans to acquire a further 50-metre vessel, as well as two other vessels from the Trinidad and Tobago Defence Force. The coast guard has now refurbished them and several of these vessels would actually be stationed in Tobago, in addition to more interceptors. There has also been the establishment of a helicopter live time video footage link for situation awareness to the Tobago Emergency Management Agency (TEMA).
“There’s the provision of mobile live situation awareness for all major events in Tobago positioned in the venue operation centres, wherever it may be at that time. There’s also aerial surveillance of hotspots and targets of interest as required by the T&T Police Service. We also have the weekly movement of ITF officers to and from Tobago which has increased the number of police officers and Defence Force personnel in Tobago, if and when required,” Griffith said.
Plans are also in train to heighten security on the inter-island ferries, in an attempt to prevent any form of illegal elements traversing the islands. Added to that, heightened police presence during the cruise shop season and other peak season in Tobago. The tourism-oriented policing unit is also well on the way, as SRPs who will fall under those parameters should start training this October.
This was confirmed by Tourism Secretary Tracy Davidson-Celestine. It was noted three CCTV cameras are not operational at this time in Tobago, and efforts are being made to have the situation rectified. THA Chief Secretary Orville London, while disappointed the Roxborough and Old Grange Police Stations are yet to get off the ground, said he remains encouraged with the proposal of a new fire station situated in