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RVIPF graduates largest batch of Cohorts

- Gov’t is committed to minimizing crime – Premier Smith
October 5th, 2018 | Tags:
Twenty-six officer; fourteen males and twelve females, displayed in brand new uniforms to take salute and applauds from spectators, family & friends in a historic moment for the Virgin Islands. Photo: VINO
Family, friends and other supporters of the Cohorts. Photo: VINO
Family, friends and other supporters of the Cohorts. Photo: VINO
Police Constable 248 Deonarine Persaud received the Commissioner's Award, Best at Police Subjects, Best Recruit and most Disciplined Student. Photo: VINO
Police Constable 248 Deonarine Persaud received the Commissioner's Award, Best at Police Subjects, Best Recruit and most Disciplined Student. Photo: VINO
Most improved student Police Constable 256 Kemoy Smith. Photo: VINO
Most improved student Police Constable 256 Kemoy Smith. Photo: VINO
Best Shot Police Constable 177 Shawn Williams. Photo: VINO
Best Shot Police Constable 177 Shawn Williams. Photo: VINO
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI: The largest batch of Cohorts to certify as Police Officers graduated from The Royal Virgin Islands Police Force (RVIPF) during a “Passing out Ceremony” on October 4, 2018, at the Queen Elizabeth II Park on the main island of Tortola.

Twenty-six officers; fourteen males and twelve females, displayed in brand new uniforms to take salute and applauds from spectators, family & friends in a historic moment for the Virgin Islands.

Commissioner of Police Mr Michael B. Matthew in his feature address told the officers that the power they hold is extraordinary, “You are ordinary people. Police officers are ordinary people but they are vested with extraordinary power.”

The top cop went on to say “And it’s how you use that power, is the mark of professional policing,” he reaffirmed the officers of their role to deliver the best policing, even in extraordinary circumstances.

Success Story

Commissioner Matthews in the address said the force also recorded history by training a Filipino national was integral in providing security to the territory in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma and Maria.

The cohort, however, took a personal decision to return to her homeland, “For the bloggers, there is nothing suspicious in that. It just wasn’t for her” he said.

Of the batch Police Constable, 248 Deonarine Persaud was awarded top honours. This proud son of the soil born to Guyanese parents received the Commissioner’s Award, Most Discipline, Best Police Subjects and Best Recruit Awards 2018.

The most improved student award went to Police Constable 256 Kemoy Smith while Police Constable 177 Shawn Williams was awarded “Best Shot”.

Zero to Hero

Governor of the Virgin Islands with responsibility for the security force, His Excellency August J. U. Jaspers recalled his first interaction with most of the new officers, “You have made history for a number of reasons, the first… I believe (you are) the largest cohort but also you are the fastest cohorts in terms of going from zero to hero in a short space of time” he said.

“We met just over one year ago” he told the force, “none of us knew what pressure would be placed on you as the newest trained, newest recruits into the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force,” Governor Jaspers said, recalling that the force had an active duty to protect the territory after the passage of hurricanes Irma and Maria which caused extensive damages.

“You didn’t buckle… you didn’t hide away behind experienced officers… your colleagues went out into the streets supporting people, helping get the territory restored and for that, I applauded you it’s absolutely a heroic achievement” Governor Jaspers told the new graduates.  

Law and Order

Premier and Minister of Finance Dr the Honourable D. Orlando Smith (AL) who managed to make it to the ceremony before the conclusion, left some sound advice for the new graduates, “I urge you to uphold the standards of this institution of which you are now part... Your addition to the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force shows us progress and growth within this crucial entity that is committed to upholding law and order” Premier Smith said.

The Premier reassured the territory that his government is committed to minimizing crime and will continue to work with the National Security Council to ensure a more vigorous crime detection and prevention platform.

President of the H. Lavity Stoutt Community College (HLSCC) Mrs Judith Vanterpool said, “You can only be an effective officer when you take your training seriously…. Taking your training seriously calls for full engagement.” She told the new officers to never forget what they learnt.

The three “F’s”

The leader of the Opposition, Hon Andrew A. Fahie (R1) challenged the new batch of police officers to be fair, firm and friendly. “It is one thing to have power but it is another thing to know how to use the power, when to use the power and when not to use the power” Hon Fahie said.

“Sometimes you get more done by just listening, sometimes you get more done by having to act, sometimes you get more done by making sure that people understand clearly for those who don’t understand” the Opposition Leader remarked.

The legislator also encouraged the officers to never compromise their integrity in the profession and that of the territory, he said “you are our frontline defence.” Honourable Melvin “Mitch” Turnbull was the only other legislator present at the ceremony. The RVIPF is currently pursuing a new batch of recruits to be trained.

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