The Minister of Police and Public Safety Douglas Singh today announced that he is nearing a decision on the new Commissioner of Police. For months now there have been speculations on who will become the nationís top cop to replace Crispin Jeffries whose contract expires at the end of next month.

Doug Singh Ė Minister of Police and Public Safety

ďA decision was made that we will be searching for a new Commissioner of Police throughout the Commonwealth. That search has commenced and we expect that within three and six months we should have a Commissioner of Police. I certainly think that bringing in someone who has different experiences, who can bring in new energies and certainly is exposed to a different system and has seen what has worked in other areas, certainly that can contribute to better within our department.

Maria Novelo - Reporter

Do you have someone particular in mind?

Doug Singh - Minister of Police and Public Safety

"No, it is a search. We will be soliciting applications; we will be putting a deadline for that, we will be short listing that and then we will be doing a screening and interviewing process for the final selection. It is something that we have been looking at for a long time. We have listened to members of the public; there are a number of persons in the public that have been touting that this perhaps might be necessary to effect the kind change that we are looking at. We had to evaluate it, we had to look at the experiences of the region. A number of countries in the Caribbean have actually made such changes. There has been mixed results. We really had to look at it, we had to look at what it is we are trying to accomplish, can we accomplish it. What type of person we are looking for so it is not like it hasnít been looked at. In addition to that, we also had to look at the cost. Initially we are looking perhaps at a team of individuals and it was really burdensome, it was really overwhelming and expensive, and we had to go back and look at that and determine what we can afford as a country, what we think is possible and if we have any additional resources we put that as the Prime Minister has committed in other elements. It is not just bringing in the person but we also have to do all the necessary things to ensure that we get the kind of results that we want.Ē

Until the new Commissioner of Police is named, the current holder of the top cop job will continue to be Crispin Jeffries. According to Singh that will be for a period not greater than six months, which, if we are to interpret correctly, means that his contract will be extended. As we reported earlier, his current contract is set to expire at the end of next month. According to Singh, Jeffries wonít just be put off when his contract ends, but will be retained in an advisory capacity for an unspecified period of time.