St. Kitts and Nevis (WINN); Prime Minister and Minister of National Security Dr. Timothy Harris has announced several national security initiatives that have recently been rolled out or are about to be undertaken.
Land is being cleared and an architect awarded the contract to design the new correctional facility in St. Kitts.
PM Harris gave a recent update on the new prison.
“I am pleased to announce that at long last, the long awaited new correctional and rehabilitation facility is now in active mode. As we speak, the site in Estridge is being cleared to facilitate better topographical surveys of the location and obtain better site drawings. Eustace Hobson and associates was awarded the contract; their tender was adjudged the overall best by the Evaluation Committee.”
So far the government has budgeted over $2 million for the design stage of the project.
Prime Minister Harris also spoke to some of the recently undertaken initiatives.
“In keeping with our strategic plan training continues we had a Forensic Awareness course held in February facilitated by the internationally renowned Cellmark Forensic Services. Emphasis was placed on gunshot residue, DNA, and sexual offences. 21 officers participated.
“Standby generators are being purchased, in fact they should be here shortly, to ensure that police stations have a constant supply of electricity.
“Another element would be the upgrade work at the Coast Guard headquarters. Since January 9, 2017 the reconstruction of the coastguard barracks commenced in earnest. Work is advancing well and is supposed to be completed during the last quarter of 2017.
“Come 2017, the police will begin utilizing drones in crime fighting. That is a significant application of technology in surveillance and other work.
“Three quarts of a million dollars has been budgeted for the maintenance and repair of all our police stations.
“We are going to be expending this year $835,000 to procure fire trucks.”
He went on to elaborate on some of recommendations made to enhance and redefine the role of the St. Johnston Police Station which doubles as the Traffic Department.
“A new traffic policy is to be unveiled shortly. The police have recommended parking meters in the city centre, a redefinition of the St. Johnston Police Station. In our town hall meetings people ask if it’s a police station or a traffic station and so we have asked as part of the new policy that the High Command must redefine where necessary the role of that station.
“There is a recommendation that there be a wrecker attached to the Traffic Department; that we have a build out of the patrol unit; and the privatization of some aspects of traffic control and management.
“Cabinet will study the recommendations and will advise in due course which ones we could adopt this year.”
Prime Minister Harris said all areas of national security are being looked at as time progresses. He also commended law enforcement agencies for the successes being recorded in the fight against crime.