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Deputy Prime Minister of Barbados, Mia Mottley, has said that improvement to the region’s security infrastructure, would be one of the major legacies from the staging of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2007.
“Many of the things that we have put in place we have been trying to do for the longest time. In fact, the Secretary General of the Caribbean Community (Edwin Carrington) has now said it is his firm belief that security must become the fourth pillar of the Community,” she stated.
Miss Mottley, who is Chair of the Security Sub-committee overseeing preparations for the mega event, was speaking at a press briefing during the Sixth Meeting of the Bureau of the Council of Ministers of National Security and Law Enforcement, held recently at the National Security Ministry in Port of Spain.
Among the achievements so far, is the establishment of the CARICOM Implementation Agency for Crime and Security (IMPACS), which executes a broad portfolio ranging from project management to research and resource mobilisation. Its overall objective is to enhance the individual and collective capacity of CARICOM member states to control crime and effectively participate in international counter crime and security initiatives.
Ms. Mottley also pointed out that a memorandum of understanding on intelligence sharing has also been put in place. “The question of the establishment of an intelligence sharing network, CISNET, among Caribbean countries did not exist before this year,” she stated.
In addition, she mentioned, security assistance among the countries in the region has also been facilitated. “We are able to provide assistance beyond the Regional Security System [RSS] countries. This [development] gives us the assurance that we can meet more of our domestic security concerns whether arising from man or natural causes in a more comprehensive way.”
Meanwhile, she disclosed that amendments to legislation to allow for the landing of international troops, if there was a major emergency beyond the capacity of the region, was next on the agenda. “We could not have had that before,” she pointed out.
Arrangements are also being put in place to deal with the Common CARICOM visa and the Single Domestic Space (SDS). “While these might have a Sunset provision, the truth is that it will give regional policymakers the opportunity to see how best we can address the issue of complete freedom of movement in an economic integration unit, because as you know, the revised Treaty of Chaguaramas limits it certain categories of workers at this stage,” Ms. Mottley explained.
The implementation of these arrangements for the hosting of the ICC Cricket World Cup next year, she noted, would give the region the opportunity to test and adjust them.
“We have a number of clear successes that will stay beyond Cricket World Cup and that will fundamentally improve the capacity of regional law enforcement to maintain order domestically, regionally and indeed will be an excellent companion to the establishment of the CARICOM Single Market and Economy,” Ms. Mottley argued.
The ICC Cricket World Cup will take place between March and April, next year.