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Sandy calls talks on ‘Barracks’ problems
National Security Minister John Sandy has met with Public Utilities Minister Emmanuel George and key officials of his ministry at the Police Training Academy in St James to address issues which are threatening the health and safety of the staff and trainees at the multi-million-dollar facility. Also present at the meeting were Police Commissioner Dwayne Gibbs, the provost of the Training Academy, Steve Watt, and senior members of the police executive.
Formerly known as the St James Barracks, the 187-year-old institution underwent major refurbishment upgrades, which began in 2005 to modernise and better equip it for the training of law enforcement officers, including municipal police and traffic wardens. The cost of the upgrade was almost $142.3 million. Sandy’s decision to convene this follow-up meeting resulted from earlier discussions with Gibbs and Watt, who pointed out the critical need for the electrical installations to be replaced and upgraded, as well as a malfunctioning sewer system to be rectified.
In order to quickly resolve the situation, Sandy invited George, as well as the chief executive officer of the Water and Sewerage Authority (WASA) Ganga Singh to tour the academy. During his hour-long meeting, Sandy gave the undertaking to the provost that problems with the main electricity supply, as well as the leaking sewer system would be dealt with “urgently.” George also agreed to give “urgent” attention to the problems, and promised that officials from WASA would visit the academy to do an in-depth assessment of the plumbing and sewer malfunction.
Sandy has also promised to discuss other infrastructural issues affecting the academy with Udecott chairman Jearlean John, as Udecott was the original project manager of the academy upgrade. At the meeting, Sandy reiterated his promise to increase the training of police recruits from 400 to 800 annually.
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