Police Service Commission Chairman Paul Slowe has accused President Irfaan Ali of attempting to intervene and trying to influence the promotion of police officers. The Chairman made these revelations on Monday morning when he broke his silence on charges brought against him and several other commissioners.
These charges have been described as “trumped up” with the aim of removing the members of the Police Service Commission. Slowe said from all indications, moves are afoot to try to remove the current commission members and replace them with persons who would support police officers that support the PPP/C administration.
Slowe detailed several calls made to him by President Ali. During a meeting on September 16, Slowe said President Ali mentioned names of officers the President wanted to be promoted. Slowe in his engagement with the press said that he reminded the President of the procedures that have to be followed and pointed out that there were several disciplinary matters facing officers named by the President.
Slowe said there were other attempts to arrange meetings between Attorney General Anil Nandlall and Vice President Bharrat Jagdeo by political advisor to the police Mohamed Qualander. Those meetings did not occur.
Another call from the President to Slowe followed the “leak” of the police promotion list.
Slowe recounting Ali’s call to him described the President as sounding, “irate and agitated.”
Slowe said President Ali “wanted to know why his people,” were not on the list as Slowe said he questioned how the President knew of the list and the document which was still confidential at the time.
Slowe accused the Head of State of lobbying openly for the promotion of Fazil Karimbakash, Calvin Brutus and one McPherson from the Presidential Guard.
Slowe told the media conference that the President sought to “butter” him up by starting his initial meeting by telling Slowe that he, the President wanted him to return as Chairman of the PSC, that he, Ali respected him and that the PPP/C, Former President Bharrat Jagdeo and late Home Affairs Minister Ronald Gajraj had “wronged” Slowe.
Slowe’s lawyer Selywn Pieters told the media that President Ali “had no right” to contact Slowe in the manner he did “to improperly influence an independent constitutional body.”
Pieters said there is a “significant case” that “deals with the political interference in this case and the collusion between his Excellency, the President, the Minister of Home Affairs, Senior Superintendent Karimbaksh, Senior Supterintendent Calvin Brutus and others,” as he added that “this case here is going to trigger some significant constitutional issues, including whether or not the President of Guyana misconducted himself under Section 94 of the constitution.”