Members of the Police Service Commission (PSC) are reportedly "baffled by the belligerence" of Attorney General Anand Ramlogan in the matter of the absence of Police Commissioner Dwayne Gibbs and Deputy Commissioner Jack Ewatski from the country, a well-placed source has said. PSC chairman Dr Ramesh Deosaran was said to be in meetings yesterday and could not be reached for comment on the matter; but a source with knowledge of the matter said PSC members were of the view that they "rescued" the situation by the actions they took on Tuesday. The PSC had raised concerns about the absence of Gibbs and Ewatski from the country and the failure to follow proper procedures and protocols in the appointment of Stephen Williams as acting Police Commissioner.
The commission also retroactively appointed Williams to act as CoP via a letter issued on Tuesday. The AG, however, was critical of the PSC's decision to issue a press release questioning the absence of the two top cops in the climate of a state of emergency. AG Ramlogan insisted yesterday that there was "no issue legal or otherwise" and the entire matter was "a storm in a teacup." He called on the PSC to explain itself and questioned their motives for issuing a press release that "would cause the kind of confusion in the minds of the population on the validity of the curfew order signed by the acting Police Commissioner Stephen Williams." According to the PSC source, the commissioners got a letter indicating that Gibbs would be out of the country and that Williams would act as CoP in his absence last Friday, on the very day that Gibbs left the country.
The matter was put on the agenda for the PSC's meeting the following Tuesday. "The PSC knew nothing about a state of emergency at that time and decided they would determine at their meeting whether the letter from Gibbs came to them properly. "It was felt that they should have been given a day or two notice, rather than the same day notification," the source said. The members of the PSC felt they had been placed in a dilemma with the matter since they had to determine whether they could make Williams' appointment retroactive. They were reportedly concerned about the way in which the matter was presented to them since they were required to act in accordance with the Constitution "which does not operate so," the source told the T&T Guardian.
To date, the source said, the PSC had received no explanation of Deputy Police Commissioner Ewatski's absence from the country. He is reportedly abroad on vacation. PSC members reportedly issued their strongly-worded release on the matter because there were "areas of grave concern" and they wanted to alert the Government and caution them to be more vigilant in the future.