PSC member Courtney McNish resigns

QUIT: Courtney McNish who resigned on Tuesday as a member of the Police Service Commission (PSC). -
QUIT: Courtney McNish who resigned on Tuesday as a member of the Police Service Commission (PSC). -

THE abrupt resignation on Tuesday of Courtney McNish from the Police Service Commission (PSC) will not hamper the commission's functioning as it still has three out of five members needed to make a quorum.

On Tuesday, the Office of the President issued a media statement confirming McNish’s resignation.

His resignation came a day after Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar called on the entire commission to quit and on the first court hearing between the PSC and suspended acting Police Commissioner Gary Griffith.

Calls and messages to both McNish and PSC chairman Bliss Seepersad on Tuesday afternoon went unanswered.

The PSC is supposed to have five members including a chairman with a quorum being two members and a chairman. The commission's term lasts five years from the date of appointment following consultation between the Prime Minister and the Opposition Leader.

The remaining members of the commission are chairman Seepersad, Roger Kawalsingh and Craig-James.

In her call for the PSC to resign, Persad-Bissessar said they are politically stained as she believes their decision to stop Griffith from returning as acting top cop, to be politically motivated.

In April, Seepersad’s appointment was renewed, with praise heaped on her by then national security minister Stuart Young.

On Monday, former police commissioner Griffith filed a lawsuit against the PSC in which he is asking the court to overturn the commission's decision to place him on suspension pending the outcome of an ongoing investigation. The matter was heard on Tuesday before Justice Ricky Rahim who adjourned it to next Monday.

Griffith has also accused senior police and government officials of being part of a conspiracy to get him out of office. He added that the conspiracy might extend to his facing trumped-up criminal charges.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP) McDonald Jacob has had his acting police commissioner term extended to October 15, according to an official from the TTPS' public relations department but Griffith maintains he is the acting commissioner as evidenced by a letter appointing him to that post, issued by the PSC, which stated his acting appointment is to run up until the conclusion of the process of selecting a police commissioner.

This could mean that if Griffith is successful in his lawsuit against the PSC next Monday, Jacob will have to revert to his substantive DCP post while Griffith will return to the police commissioner's seat as acting top cop.


"PSC member Courtney McNish resigns"

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