“We must recognize that our citizens’ safety, security and well-being remain the cornerstone of our great nation’s prosperity,” remarked the Hon. Wayne Munroe, Minister of National Security, at a ‘Meet the Policy Makers Lecture Series’ presentation at the University of The Bahamas (UB), Tuesday. The Minister discussed ‘Maintaining Law and Order.’
He said: “As the Minister of National Security I am guided by the Blueprint for change commitment to implement the National Development Plan Vision 2040.” The formulation of this development plan was funded by an IDB loan and was a collective bipartisan and truly national effort informed by participation from all sectors of the society and undergirded by evidence and research efforts.” He noted it contains a comprehensive plan to attain the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, and it is a reliable blueprint to inform action. “Vision 2040 is ambitious and achievable with a comprehensive approach that tackles the root causes of crime and implements evidence-based strategies that foster a culture of lawfulness and social cohesion.”
To realize the vision, Minister Munroe said, “we are committed to investing in developing our law enforcement infrastructure, modernizing our approach to policing, promoting community engagement, and strengthening our criminal justice system.
“I would like to emphasize the key tenets guiding our approach to maintaining law and order and providing security for our citizens. These tenets are:
Prevention: “Our primary goal is to prevent crime by intervening with at-risk youth before they turn to criminal activities. To achieve this, we have reinvigorated and in some cases implemented a range of programs and initiatives to empower our young people, providing them with the tools and support they need to make positive life choices. These initiatives include, but are not limited to, Students Together Against Negative Decisions (STAND), Berry Island Community Band, Law Enforcement Empowerment and Preparedness Program, Urban Renewal 2.0 and the Defence Force Rangers. By investing in these programs, we are actively working to address the root causes of crime and violence, fostering a safer and more secure society for all,” said Minister Munroe.
Detection, Arrest, and Disruption: “We understand the critical role of law enforcement in maintaining public safety. As such, we are committed to providing them with the resources they need to combat crime effectively. This includes increased enlistment for the Royal Bahamas Defence Force and the Police Force, the purchase of additional vehicles for saturation patrols, and the implementation of specialized task forces and units, such as the Anti-Gang and Firearms Task Force and the sexual offences domestic violence unit. We aim to ensure that our law enforcement agencies are equipped to respond rapidly and efficiently to criminal activities, safeguarding the well-being of our citizens.”
Trial: “We recognize that a fair and efficient judicial system is essential to maintaining public trust in our institutions,” Minister Munroe said.
Rehabilitation: “Our approach to National Security extends beyond prevention and enforcement to include the rehabilitation of offenders. We are dedicated to transforming the Bahamas Department of Correctional Services (BDOCS) into a true correctional facility by reintroducing programs in partnership with the Bahamas Technical and Vocational Institute (BTVI) and other stakeholders. These programmes will provide inmates with the skills necessary to become productive citizens upon release, reducing the likelihood of reoffending. Furthermore, we are working towards constructing a new prison to ensure a safe and secure environment that promotes rehabilitation and prevents the recruitment of gang members within the facility.”
By STIRLING STRACHAN/Bahamas Information Services