Retired Chief of Defence Staff (CoDS), Brigadier General Rodney Smart, is expected to be promoted tomorrow (TUESDAY) to the rank of Major General, during a handing-over ceremony at Teteron Barracks, Chaguaramas.
During the same ceremony; scheduled to start at 4 pm, Acting CoDS, Captain Hayden Pritchard, will be confirmed in the post and promoted to Commodore.
A third officer, Colonel (FIRST NAME NOT KNOWN) Phillips, is expected to be promoted to the rank of Brigadier General and elected to the position of Vice CoDS.
The rank of Major General is the highest rank any military officer can be promoted to. The elevation to this rank means the officer will receive two stars instead of one but there is no increase in salary or gratuity.
Well-placed sources today informed Newsday that Smart is also expected to be given a top position in the Dr Keith Rowley administration. Sources also revealed that Smart may serve as National Security Advisor to Prime Minister Rowley.
Smart was quoted in a letter sent to UNC Senator, Wayne Sturge, a few months ago as having named his immediate predecessor, Retired Major General Kenrick Maharaj, as the person who organised the October 2016 visit of Attorney General, Faris Al Rawi’s son and daughter to Camp Cumuto in Wallerfield, where the minors were photographed handling Army- owned high-powered weapons.
Maharaj has challenged that statement, saying he had nothing to do with the visit. Subsequently, on July 20, he received a letter of apology from Acting CoDS, Hayden Pritchard.
Maharaj is now exploring his legal options to clear his name.