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COMPOL Williams Comments on National Issues

Police Commissioner Chester Williams has voiced his concerns over the unions’ protests over the ten percent salary cut and increment freeze. The high-ranking official says he empathizes with the public officers and teachers, but does not agree with their reluctance in working with the government.

Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police: “I have always said I support the government’s move to support the ten percent salary. I believe that it is in the best interest of the country and if it is that we want to see ourselves get out of the financial crisis we are in we all must sacrifice something. The private sector for the most party have taken the brunt of what had occurred. Many of those in the private sector didn’t have the chance to negotiate, they come to work one morning and they were relieved from duties because there’s no money to pay. Some of them took a pay cut without any negotiation so whilst I do understand what the unions are fighting for I do understand the position that the government is in and what they are trying to do in terms of ensuring that we as a country do what we can to be able to restore our country to the way where we want it to be so that everyone can prosper and I think that’s the important thing.”

Love News asked the Police Commissioner to give his views on the unions’ clamor for good governance and the implementation of new and amended legislation including UNCAC and the Whistleblowers.

Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police: “I do support the initiative of the unions but again I listened attentively to the AG yesterday and as a lawyer I can tell you that you don’t get up one morning and just draft laws and pass it. Drafting laws and passing laws requires research because we want to ensure when we do pass these laws that they are fit for the country. As much as what I heard the AG said yesterday we’re looking at the Trinidad model even if we look at the Trinidad model we cannot just copy it as is, we still have to do research to ensure that we domesticate the Trinidad model to be able to suit our circumstances in Belize so it still will require some research, require some time to ensure that when we do pass the law it is what we want as a country. So consultation both with the government and the private sector and the unions is important and they need to give some time to ensure that they consultation occurs with a view to getting the input from the different stakeholders so that the law will contain what we as a country need.”