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Munroe defends scheme he said was fake news

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National Security Minister Wayne Munroe. Photo: Moise Amisial

By JADE RUSSELL

Tribune Staff Reporter

jrussell@tribunemedia.net

NATIONAL Security Minister Wayne Munroe defended the Royal Bahamas Police Force’s new arrest incentive system yesterday, comparing it to schemes for teachers or people who work in banks.

He said there is no budget to give cash awards to officers. It remains unclear how the officers will be rewarded.

Mr Munroe previously dismissed reports of the incentive scheme as “fake news”. Yesterday, he said he was referring to officers getting cash prizes when he did this. “Nobody is paid for it,” he told reporters. “And that was what I was responding to. They have no budget to pay anyone for it.

“What was being suggested was they were being paid in money. As far as I’m aware, they’re not paid money. As far as I’m aware, there’s no budget to pay them. In every field, whatever your performance standard is, you’re judged by it.”

When Mr Munroe told The Tribune “fake news”, it was in response to a question for comment about the leaked document. No question about any financial award was posed.

Mr Munroe said other organisations have provided employees with different forms of incentives.

“If you go to the bank, there will be an employee of the quarter,” he said. “Every school you go to, there’s a teacher of the year, and they get special parking.”

 Asked if he approves of the incentive system, he said he doesn’t run the operation of the police force.

 “I know that when they send me recommendations for promotions, which we’re undergoing now, they assess officers’ performance because clearly, you want to promote the performing people because that’s the whole point of it,” he said. “As I understand, that operation is about interdicting guns off the street so surely you want to judge my performance by how many guns I interdict.”

 The system awards points to teams based on the number of arrests made for major or minor offences. It also awards points for stopping and searching people and for issuing tickets.

 “In the bank, you judge a banker’s performance by how many loans they write or how many delinquencies they do,” Mr Munroe said. “The commissioner has said this is something to incentivise performance, and the public is to be kept safe by uninsured, unlicensed cars being off the street, guns being off the street, criminals being off the street. People who are wanted under warrants of arrest being arrested and taken off the streets. Surely, you incentivise the police to perform to those targets.”

 He added: “I imagine that in the promotional exercise coming up, one of the measures of people to be promoted will be their performance. I would hope it is driven by their performance.”

 Last week, Human Rights Bahamas said the police force should disclose the reward officers will receive through the new arrest incentive programme, calling the competition ill-conceived.

 “We are already dealing with an alarmingly high rate of police brutality claims and officer-involved killings,” HRB said.

 “Officers are routinely accused of threatening and torturing suspects to obtain coerced confessions, and videos of police misconduct of various kinds have proliferated in recent times.

 “At the same time, violent crime has placed even the most well-meaning and professional officers under extreme stress to achieve results.

 “There is no question that such an incentive scheme runs a huge risk of enticing officers to make false arrests on little or no evidence, seriously violating the human rights of members of the public as a result. It could easily spin out of control with catastrophic and far-reaching consequences for the public’s faith in law enforcement.”

Comments

JokeyJack 7 months, 1 week ago

"Shackles for Slaves" - could this be our new national motto? How about "Forward, Upward, and Vaseline Works" ?

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FreeportFreddy 7 months ago

Once again I will ask the question: How many other Police Forces use such a scheme? ANSWER: ZERO

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FreeportFreddy 7 months ago

Maybe the Nazi Government back in the 1930's rewarded officers for Jew Arrests and harassments....other than that I can't think of even 1 LEGITIMATE Police Force doing this.

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bobby2 7 months ago

Wow, is Munroe for real as he talks like he is in Disney Land. Any idiot would know, Police incentives such as this only puts motivation of an Officer in question by citizens. Totally, unbelieveable!!!!

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ExposedU2C 7 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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TalRussell 7 months ago

According to the colony's top political astuteness psychologist. --- Labelling of the policemans' incentive scheme as “fake news”.--- 'TIs not the politically astute way to 'escape' from a $40 million prison rut. --- Yes?

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moncurcool 7 months ago

SMH.

Defending fake news now? WOW

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realfreethinker 7 months ago

Caught in a lie and rather than admit it he doubles down.

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sheeprunner12 7 months ago

Some schools DO pay teachers who get outstanding GLAT, BJC and BGCSE results .......... They get paid a ceratin amount per subject depending on whether it is an A or a B.

So, if Munroe is using that analogy, he needs to find out which Police Stations are paying their officers for getting the most citations in a given period.

The public will like to compare "incentives" notes on the teachers vs the policemen ................

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The_Oracle 7 months ago

So, cops pay themselves rewards from the pockets of citizens harassed/arrested based upon officers fiscal needs? Or Treasury needs? Apparently immigration does the same when rounding up Haitians so precedent has been set, I suppose the fire dept will start charging to respond to fires? In the words of Forest Gump……….

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mandela 7 months ago

The difference between the police and every other organization is that the police officers took an oath and a pledeg to protect and serve the Bahamian people, now Mr Munroe and bottom cop Fernander want to reward the force for work they don't even do and to now reward the police for harassing and beating citizens and punching females in their eyes.

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Greentea 7 months ago

western posses used to get rewarded like this. mercenaries get paid like this. ton ton macoutes used to get rewarded like this for ill deeds like this against the populace in Haiti. Who thinks this is a good idea in this "sell ya ma" for a few dollars country is insane. what are police being "paid" for then?

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