Amid calls for increased resources to be pumped into crime fighting, Premier Dr Natalio Wheatley said he believes Governor John Rankin is pleased with the funding the government has allocated to reduce crime in the community.
The governor — who is in charge of the territory’s security — often reminds residents that he can only implement improvements where funds are given by the elected government.
Speaking at a press conference last week, a journalist asked Premier Wheatley whether the governor expressed satisfaction or dissatisfaction with funding for crime fighting and the justice system.
Premier Wheatley responded with a “yes”.
“Up until now, the Police Commissioner has been very appreciative of the resources that have been provided. Of course, there is only one pot of money that everything has to be funded from so they’ve been understanding but they’ve been pleased thus far.”
Governor Rankin has leveraged his relationship with UK authorities to get additional resources to assist with fighting crime in the BVI. Recently, Minister Mike Freer from the UK Justice Ministry visited the BVI between November 5 and 7 to get an understanding of the opportunities and challenges in the BVI justice system, and to identify areas for further partnership with the UK.
Minister Freer was part of a UK delegation that was invited to offer support to local law enforcement agencies.
Despite UK assistance, the bulk of the spending for security comes from the territory’s coffers which are controlled by the Premier and Minister of Finance. Still, the BVI constitution gives the Governor the power to override decisions made by Cabinet and implement measures for the benefit of the territory.
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