Acting Commissioner of Police Wendel Robinson is to be confirmed in the post “very shortly”, according to the National Security Minister Steadroy “Cutie” Benjamin, who said the government is satisfied with the officer’s leadership.
Benjamin said serious crimes have decreased because of changes implemented by Robinson or upon his recommendation.
“I hope you can understand now, why this government in its wisdom exactly one year ago, decided that Mr Wendel Robinson ought to be placed in the acting position as commissioner of police. That situation will be regularised very, very soon. The successes we’ve had in Antigua & Barbuda were not done by chance, it was by choice,” Benjamin said.
The minister’s praise of the force and the top cop comes in the face of the opposition United Progressive Party’s claim that the police have been acting on political directives and harassing residents.
The opposition claims that the country is becoming a police state, citing a number of complaints of police brutality on residents, including the beating of a blind man in Barbuda and an openly gay man among many others.
A year ago on Friday Robinson was posted at the helm of the police force to act as commissioner after the appointed top cop Vere Browne was suspended.
Browne said his suspension was based on his refusal to publish the police promotions list and at the same time he was fighting the promotions.
However, the former top cop has since dropped both allegations and has reportedly agreed to a settlement ahead of his pending retirement on his 60th birthday in March.