|Thursday 23rd February 2023|
My fellow citizens and residents,
Today marks a significant occasion for the principal law enforcement Body in the Federation…the Installation Ceremony of the Commissioner of the Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force.
Mr. James Whitinton Sutton has dedicated his life to the service of his country and people.
As a police officer, he remains loyal to his duty to serve and protect the public and he continues to do so with dignity and integrity throughout his career – and so today, on behalf of the entire country, it is our turn to express our appreciation to you, Commissioner Sutton and to congratulate you on your elevation to the leadership position of the Royal St Christopher and Nevis Police Force.
You have proven that you are uncompromising in the fight you have declared against crime, and this is why you have remained successful throughout your career.
You come to this new and major position with immense experience and expertise.
You climbed the ranks of the police force, exhibiting your knowledge of policing which includes crime detection, crime prevention, and strategic planning.
You continue to demonstrate the true meaning of public service.
I am aware that policing has become increasingly challenging in today’s world. Police reform is therefore a priority – it is about making policing more beneficial to both the public at large and the men and women of the Force who are tasked to work collaboratively in making our communities safe.
The Government’s decision to increase the budget for the Ministry of National Security for this budgetary cycle was informed by the aim to enhance the implementation of the strategic plans and policies designed to better manage the reduction of criminal activities within the Federation.
Our efforts to expand community policing have proven fruitful as was demonstrated only a few weeks ago. I would like to applaud the Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force once again for the rapid responses that resulted in the apprehension of suspects within minutes after the tragic incident. The swift action is testimony to the Government’s thrust to increase safety and security throughout our nation and reduce the fear of crime.
Freedom and security are essential, and we must assure our citizens and residents that their safety and well-being are our first order of business.
We are aware of the numerous challenges confronting our officers while on duty. As a Government, we are committed to providing the necessary resources and training opportunities to build the capacity of the officers for more effective delivery of service to the people of our beloved country. We must work together to fill the gaps that have been created over the years, in our efforts to develop a model police force that can respond to all situations.
Moral and personal integrity are the necessary pillars needed within the Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force.
I look forward to collaborating with you in your new role as Commissioner of Police. I am confident that you will do what is necessary to ensure that our officers receive the required training to target and reduce recidivism, forge stronger community relationships, reduce criminal activity, and help establish safe havens for our youth.
I feel compelled to use this platform to condemn all acts of violent crimes in our Federation. We commend the officers for their quick response and the community for collaborating with them to secure the arrest of perpetrators of these criminal acts. I appeal to young men and women to move forward from a lifestyle of crime that has brought much grief and loss to their families. You have been provided the opportunity to reform! Make good use of it.
Commissioner Elect, your task is great but with the support of your colleagues and the people of the Federation, you will create the enabling environment to create prance and security in our land.
I wish you every success along this new journey.
May God bless you and your family, the Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force; and may God richly bless our beloved Federation, Saint Kitts and Nevis.