By Carlena Knight
The Acting Commissioner of Police, Atlee Rodney, has expressed his satisfaction with the newly implemented automated Police Records Management Information System (PRMIS).
The PRMIS will transition police stations from paper-based reporting to a digital format.
The official handover of computer hardware and software to the police force to support the implementation of key activities under USAID’s CariSECURE Project took place on Wednesday.
“That brings a lot of benefits to the Force. It has been a process in the making and I am looking forward to when we have basically launched and start to use the technology. It’s basically going to capture more information when reports of crime are made to the police station and as a result when you are analyzing the information, it gives you a better perspective as to how you can plan to address it,” Rodney said on OBSERVER AM on Thursday
Inadequate funds were the main reason highlighted by the acting commissioner as to why a programme such as this is only now being implemented in the country.
“New technology comes with a cost and now we have the assistance. It’s not that it’s something that we didn’t want; we have been trying to get it for the longest while, but you know with new technology it has a cost on it and sometimes we have to manage our resources and our priorities.
“At least we can be happy now that it is coming our way now with some assistance from international donors,” he said.
The Royal Police Force of Antigua and Barbuda has partnered with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to launch the system.
The police report application is being piloted at the Dockyard and St. John’s police stations and will allow the officers to capture real-time data on incidents reported – a stepping stone to more standardized, accurate crime data, and evidence-based decision-making to reduce crime and violence.
Police will also gain vital intelligence on crime hot spots, as well as persons of interest, including their traits and crime footprint.
A training exercise will follow the PRMIS launch where officers from the pilot stations and other critical units are expected to benefit from hands-on familiarization with the new application.
Antigua and Barbuda is the fifth country in the Eastern and Southern Caribbean to launch the system.
The official launch is set to take place at the Dockyard Police Station on August 29th.