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NDP seeking to restore flopped Parole Board

- restoration of Parole Board included in NDP's manifesto
Following the failure of the Parole Board, prisoners deemed eligible for parole were released by the then Governor William B. McCleary after consultation with the Prerogative of Mercy Committee, which advises the Governor on conditional release for prisoners. Photo: VINO/File
Immediate Past Governor of the Virgin Islands, William B. McCleary (left) had transferred responsibilities for parole from the Ministry of Education and Culture headed by Hon Myron V. Walwyn to the Ministry of Health and Social Development. Photo: VINO/File
Immediate Past Governor of the Virgin Islands, William B. McCleary (left) had transferred responsibilities for parole from the Ministry of Education and Culture headed by Hon Myron V. Walwyn to the Ministry of Health and Social Development. Photo: VINO/File
The National Democratic Party (NDP) 2015 manifesto was launched on May 30, 2015. Photo: VINO
The National Democratic Party (NDP) 2015 manifesto was launched on May 30, 2015. Photo: VINO
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI – It was stated in the Parole Board's 2013 annual report that dossiers were prepared for the first potential parole hearing in April of 2012, but the application was aborted primarily due to the non-appointment of a parole officer. The board has since flopped.

This was under the Ministry of Education and Culture headed by Hon Myron V. Walwyn. However, the National Democratic Party (NDP) government has the matter of a Parole Board in its 2015 manifesto in which one of the glaring issues under the section dealing with crime, the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force (RVIPF) and Her Majesty’s Prison (HMP), is the establishing of a Parole Board.

A parole board is a panel of people who decide whether an offender should be released from prison on parole after serving at least a minimum portion of their sentence as prescribed by the sentencing judge.

The manifesto further stated that the NDP recognises the need to reduce the high incidence of crime especially among young offenders, develop a crime prevention plan following community-based hearings on the matter and inviting suggestions for solutions, establish a Parole Board and support the anonymous reporting of criminal activities.

Parole Board an issue?

It was shortly after the NDP took office in 2011 that they, through Government Information Service (GIS), had called for persons to apply to be part of a Parole Board.

The board was established according to a report seen by this news site, however, it was essentially shut down as the non-appointment of a parole officer hindered work and prevented members from considering inmates for parole sometime in mid 2013.

“Midway through the year, the Board decided not to meet officially unless something significant had changed to allow the Board to exercise its duties. It was also agreed that continued updates will be circulated to members via email," according to the report.

The Board's Chairman, Mr Denniston Fraser planned to meet with certain prisoners who were eligible for parole to inform them of the reason for not having the hearing. Additionally consultants, Mr and Mrs Edwards of Edwards Consulting advised that it was not a good idea for the Chairman to meet with the prisoners outside of the parole hearing setting.

The report indicated that prisoners deemed eligible for parole were released by the then Governor William Boyd McCleary after consultation with the Prerogative of Mercy Committee, which advises the Governor on conditional release for prisoners.

McCleary had also transferred responsibilities for parole from the Ministry of Education and Culture to the Ministry of Health and Social Development.

“…we are on the way to introducing a parole system. It has been some time in coming but we have an established parole board and are working to ensure that the basic structure is in place so that the parole can take off,” UK-appointed Governor Mr William Boyd McCleary had said on September 17, 2013.

New location of Police Headquarters

Printed in the National Democratic Party's manifesto off 2015 are a number of things targeting the disciplinary service of the territory and among them is the removal of the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force headquarters from the Sir Olva Georges Plaza‎ along Waterfront Drive in Road Town.

"Although it is important that the RVIPF be located in a prominent and accessible location, there is no need for their ‎administration to be located in the Sir Olva Georges Plaza. As part of the revitalisation of Road Town, our city centre, a suitable location will be found for accommodating these hard working public servants," states the manifesto.

11 Responses to “NDP seeking to restore flopped Parole Board”

  • sad (02/06/2015, 11:09) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
    Sadly I cannot believe anything these Political Parties or Politicins say these days, even though there may be some truth in them. How come all of a sudden we start to hear about these things? Are the affairs of the territory being hijacked or being held ransom for personal gains and power?
    • please (02/06/2015, 14:00) Like (10) Dislike (5) Reply
      How come all of a sudden you are listening? Where were you the last 3 and a half years? Just because you start paying attention at election time doesn't mean they are only now saying or doing things. How many of you read the Gazette? Government sites? NO. You want to be spoon fed.
  • ooooo (02/06/2015, 11:18) Like (1) Dislike (1) Reply

    ...... only wanted to get a brother off the hook

  • .... (02/06/2015, 11:55) Like (6) Dislike (3) Reply
    After 3 and a half years of doing nothing mow they talking more dhit but parole board
  • Schuups (02/06/2015, 14:25) Like (2) Dislike (8) Reply
    The Parole System is well in place and the Parole Board already had its first hearing. Next!
  • Just Curious (02/06/2015, 15:23) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    Who is the Chairman and Members of the Parole Board??? Inquiring minds want to know.
  • weed (02/06/2015, 15:31) Like (0) Dislike (1) Reply
    a book written by the consutants saying nothing!!
  • Ears (02/06/2015, 15:34) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    These Politicians are applying to us the people for work (huge salaries). So they are saying anything for us to employ them------After we employ them-- they become the ignorant bosses.
  • wise up (02/06/2015, 20:55) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    what are the VIP plans for the parol board ( NDP this and NDP that) how will VIP deal with the issue (just asking, we need to know)
  • lolol (02/06/2015, 22:04) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
    NDP here talking about parol board because they want us to vote for them b4 they talk about giving some of the jail man them a find to build back up the country because we r broke and ain got no money in the country but we got people in jail living for free out of our tax money that we got to work hard to b paying.. come up with something better NDP
  • ??????????? (02/06/2015, 22:39) Like (3) Dislike (4) Reply
    ndp goin win


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