Community Policing Groups (CPG) have increased their presence in border villages, in order to amplify security in remote locations, where access to a law enforcement agency is absent.Public Security Minister Khemraj Ramjattan told media operatives on Friday that there are a number of initiatives which these policing groups have embarked on within the last year.Mechanisms were put in place to establish more community policing groups as well as Police stations in Regions One (Barima-Waini), Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni) and Nine (Upper Takutu-Upper Essequibo).“We must emphasise because of the developments in the border area, more Police stations, more CPG group formations in these communities, especially when it’s hard to get more Policemen in these areas… CPGs are now active in villages spanning the hinterland,” said Ramjattan.Moving forward, the Ministry will seek to increase the number of such groups in the interior regions. However, he admitted that these groups have provided some level of security to communities that are subjected to criminal activities.“Community policing is premised on that philosophy whereby the community has that definite interest and therefore, must perform that defined obligation… The efforts of Community Policing Groups have been in a way, helping to reduce the negatives of crimes,” the Minister said.Ramjattan noted that these groups have received international support from the United Nations and the International Organisation for Migration.Adding to that, administrator of the groups, Dennis Pompey, mentioned that groups across the country would have produced many successes in their bid to combat crime.“The main focus in community policing is ensuring safety and security through various crime prevention mechanisms. The community policing over the years have yielded tremendous benefits from the hard work we delivered in 2018.”To date, there are 16 divisions, 210 policing groups, consisting of 4255 members.There was an increase in the number of patrols from 5765 in 2017 to 9182 in 2018. These were carried out by foot, vehicles and vessels.“We have established groups in non-traditional areas… Community policing continues to engage the youths of today through our 35 youth groups that are currently existing within the divisions,” said Pompey.After taking office in 2015, the A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change Government had taken away the vehicles from the CPGs and handed them over to the Guyana Police Force. In 2017, realising the importance of CPGs, Ramjattan announced that several of those resources have since been returned to the CPGs.
Construction is ever-present on the University of Alabama’s campus, but several projects will be completed soon.When students and faculty return for the fall semester they will be greeted by the brand new capstone parking deck.“This parking deck will hold about a thousand spaces here on the southeast perimeter of campus,” said Megan Whitten, UA’s communications director. “It supports a lot of spaces in the area, you think of athletics, the Bryant Conference Center, the Moody Music Hall, all of the spaces around here that really need that parking support.”Another project that will be completed in the coming months is the renovation of Paty Residence Hall, which is projected to be finished in August. The University has spent nearly $15 million on renovations to improve student housing.“This will certainly be more positive for the students living there and I think it shows our commitment to maintaining a whole variety of housing options for students,” said Alicia Browne, UA’s Director of Student Housing Administration.Alabama is continuing to work on the aquatic center renovation and updates to University Hall on the Bryce Campus as well as the Mal M. Moore Athletic Facility. Although the construction on these projects may run into the fall, impacting students and faculty, the improvements will be worth it in the long run.Students can look online at the UA campus map and access the construction completion dates as well as information about the projects.More projects are set to begin soon and are said to be collectively costing more than $400 million.