PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad, Friday March 1, 2013
According to Caribbean 360 Trinidad and Tobago's government plans to give soldiers police powers in order to crack down on an escalation of crime in the country.
The Cabinet approved Attorney General Anand Ramlogan's note to give effect to the legislation.
The proposed bill will give legal protection to Defence Force personnel and the same rights, privileges and immunities as police officers, and the same powers as police officers, including power to arrest, search, seize and to carry arms.
The government will ensure Defence Force personnel would be trained in areas such as police practice and procedure, investigations, law and court process to ensure they are properly equipped to undertake their duties alongside police officers.
This is a good move by the Trinidad and Tobago government that other Caribbean nations should follow. Tight budgets and deteriorating public safety conditions in Caribbean nations warrant the use of these "showcase" armies to protect public safety. After all, who are these Caribbean countries planning to invade and could any of these armies prevent a real invasion?