Aragon becomes the third police Minister in eight weeks - a time of unprecedented transition. With over 1500 police officers bouncing from minister to minister, we figured that couldn't be a good thing. So we asked him about the transition tremors:...

Jules Vasquez, 7News
"Is it productive for the department to have gone from Saldivar to Hulse now to you, so that's three directions in just eight weeks?"

Hon. Elodio Aragon, Minister of State - Home Affairs
"Well, I don't know if it's three directions, I mean Hulse was only here about a month, you know, and it takes you some time. Like I said, right now I 09:00 can't come now and say "this is my policy direction etc." We have to really sit down look at where were are and where we want to go."

Jules Vasquez, 7News
"Mr. Saldivar, right on the cusp of when he was removed gave a press conference which was about law enforcement, the Mason events overtook that press conference, but he outlined some very specific initiatives that he wanted to do to normalize crime particularly in the city. Those, I take it, were just abandoned. How do you provide that institutional continuity to say, "Ok, I know the direction we're going let's more or less keep on that without reinventing the wheel."

Hon. Elodio Aragon, Minister of State - Home Affairs
"Jules this is not about us going and just at the whim, saying "we'll go here and there." No. We have to sit down, we have to really look at what is working within this department. What is not working and what needs to change. I am confident that, that a lot of strategies are out there, a lot of plans are out there and we need to look at that we need to do some analysis, we have to see what will work and improve upon that."

Will Aragon Shake Up Senior Command?

And while the Ministers have changed, the COMPOL has remained the same. Allen Whylie has been commissioner since 2013 and from the looks of things he's not going anywhere. We say that because there appears to be some kind of logjam at the post of Assistant Commissioner where there are currently no less than eight Assistant Commissioners. We asked Aragon about the Top Cop spot, and he was slightly evasive:...

Jules Vasquez, 7News
"The commissioner's post - is that something that you are as the minister prepared to look at and review that perhaps there is new leadership needed in the department?"

Hon. Elodio Aragon, Minister of Police
"Jules I am here for what is best for the police department, and like is aid at the end of the day I will hold everybody accountable."

Jules Vasquez, 7News
"Respectfully, you didn't really answer my question insofar as, is that a post that you would be looking at, obviously the murder rate that's the crime you spoke about - murders are up his year, murders were up last year. is this a problem that we are having with leadership - that there is ineffective leadership of the Police Department? Is that something that you would be prepare to look at?"

Hon. Elodio Aragon, Minister of Police
"Jules we have to look at everything. Because at the end of the day if we're going to get the job done then we have to ensure that we have the right people in the right positions. But I will tell you right now if you look at our major crime from 2009 to 2016, you can't say that we're not bringing down major crimes. The problems in those is always the murders which is always an issue that we have to look on. And it's not an easy problem Jules."

"The point is that of course we have to look at these things, and I as the minister here responsible for the police, will look at it on a whole and see that we make the right fit, for what will make this department effective."

Jules Vasquez, 7News
"I am sure you are aware that many major crimes depend on reporting such as rape. There may be fewer rapes reported including burglary, because people, for whatever reason lose confidence in the department - for whatever reason - and don't report it."

"I am saying that if all major crimes are trending yet murder is trending up, isn't that then an indication that perhaps it might be a decrease in reporting major crime?"

Hon. Elodio Aragon, Minister of Police
"Jules now you are talking about the "dark figure" of crime and if you had studied criminology, you'll know that in all our statistics there's always some of what you call the dark figure of crime." And while he wants to root out corruption, will this former cop play favourites? In 17 years as a cop, he surely developed friendships and professional alliances. We asked him if this will taint his judgment:...

Jules Vasquez, 7News
"Some might be concerned well, when Elodio mi de ya me and he nevah 'gree, sake a that now he gwen send me da PG. I'm not saying that you're prone to these immature or unprofessional types of motives, but it's natural for people to feel apprehension that if perhaps you and them in the normal course of things ha da professional misunderstanding during your career as a police officer, that perhaps you may wish to settle, or move them out of the way, so that you can have a functional hierarchy that suits yourself."

Hon. Elodio Aragon, Minister of State - Home Affairs
"When I worked as a police officer, I have always been a professional, that's the way I have always been myself, I try to adhere to that kind of, to that level of professionalism."

"My goal here as the minister responsible for police is not to look at friendships and to what may suit one or two, I am here for the Belize Police department and for this country. And I will do whatever it takes to ensure that we move this department forward. When it comes to the movement of police officers, that is the job of the commissioner of police, I am looking at policy." Aragon was a former Deputy Commissioner, and this morning he gave his senior officers the first hint that he's willing to shake things up for those asleep at the command desk:...

Hon. Elodio Aragon, Minister of State - Home Affairs
"It is my hope that you come to work to make a difference. Why come to work or be a police officer if you did not like the work you do? Or feel that you cannot contribute? If there is anyone of you who feel that you have had enough and is not capable of contributing to the department, let me know so I can help you on your way. You see, I am of the belief that you are senior officers who can contribute and can make a difference, but sometimes we lose our drive and our motivation. I ask that you re-motivate yourself and re-inspire that lion or lioness within you so that we lead this department forward."

"There is no room for corrupt police officers and no room for those who just want a free ride. We are all in the business of crime fighting and I want to see a professional police department." And as he alluded to - the police ministry is a tough job. It has confounded former star-ministers such as Dean Barrow, Jorge Espat, Ralph Fonseca and Doug Singh - whose tenures didn't make much of a dent in reducing major crimes. But, Aragon has one advantage over all those guys; he's a former career police officer, one who earned a master's degree in criminology from the University of Leicester in the UK. We asked him what's his plans and his fears:...

Jules Vasquez, 7News
"What are your hopes, expectations and apprehensions as you take over this portfolio?"

Hon. Elodio Aragon, Minister of State - Home Affairs
"No matter where you go this portfolio of the police is always a contentious portfolio, because it has lot of challenges."

"I will tell you that through my experience i have the knowledge, the expertise in terms of understanding exactly what takes place in the police department you know, understand the police culture, understand the kinda things that our police officer have to deal with, to put up with on a day to day basis. Ensuring that we hold our police officers, our senior officers accountable, so that we can get the job done together."

Jules Vasquez, 7News
"How do you stay away from micromanaging, because you have such an intimate sense and feel of how the police department operates and doing what you should do which is being in charge police to steer and direct the department in the right direction?"

Hon. Elodio Aragon, Minister of State - Home Affairs
"Well, Like I mentioned earlier, I am not here to do the commissioner's job, I am not here to do the senior officer's job, that is their role and function. I am looking at the policy direction of this department, holding our people accountable to ensure that we get the work done. And a lot of this has to be organized, has to be planned out you know if we are going to make a difference in this country, it will not come about by luck or providence, it has to come about by us implementing new strategies, looking at what the situation is, and addressing them as best as possible."

Aragon becomes the second former cop to become police minister. Former Commissioner, Maxwell Samuels was the first.

New Police Minister Says He’ll Listen Before Leading

The new Minister of State with responsibility for Police Elodio Aragon held his first officers conference today in Belmopan. He gathered them into the training room at the Academy where he addressed 100 senior officers. Aragon knows them all very well - after all, he was a cop for 17 years - and reached the post of Deputy Commissioner before leaving for politics in 2013. Today he told his fellow colleagues that familiarity doesn't mean easy days ahead:...

Hon. Elodio Aragon, Minister of State - Home Affairs
"I have worked with all of you in the past whether it was on the streets or in the office. i know you and you know me."

"The task at hand is not an easy one especially in the face of the current murder rate statistics."

"As the minister responsible for police I know that you all may want to know what are my plans, and what will I bring to the table. In this regard, I want to first tell you that having been out of the police service for over three years you get to appreciate and see a lot of things. In a sense you get to look at things from another point of view. But I am not here today to detail or highlight any new strategy or plan of action, because I know that the commissioner or the department has their plan of action, but rather today's gathering is to bring me up to speed with you the commanders and where we are as a department because three years away is a lot in law enforcement."

"People always seh Mr Aragon you come back home. Tell you the truth sometimes I never wah come back home because this da noh joke this da hard work, and I know what you've been through, I know what you all go through, but I am confident that if anybody can make a positive impact, for this department, it is us."

Channel 7