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Deputy Commissioners of Police to face off over seniority of appointments by Security Services Commission

Posted: Tuesday, June 6, 2023. 3:09 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: A highly-placed source has confirmed the application of Deputy Commissioner of Police Bartholomew “Bart” Jones, in charge of Professional Standards and Legal Affairs and Compliance, to the High Court for judicial review against the Security Services Commission’s decision to appoint fellow deputy Dr Richard Rosado to the same post with a full year’s worth of seniority over him.

The Commission promoted Dr Rosado with effect from July 1, 2021, and Jones with effect from July 1, 2022, while the third Deputy Commissioner in charge of administration, Aaron Guzman, was promoted with effect from November 1, 2022, in its decision of March 14, 2023.

DCP Jones argues that as of July 1, 2021, no vacant post existed for Deputy Commissioner of Police, and at that time, Dr Rosado did not meet the necessary promotion qualifications. He further argues that he was not given a chance to present his case to the SSC, nor received any explanation from them as to their decision – a violation of principles of natural justice and the constitutional right to due process and equal protection under the law. Further, Jones argues that certain extraneous factors were erroneously taken into consideration and that the request of Commissioner of Police Chester Williams was to have Dr Rosado’s promotion be with effect from July 1, 2022 – the same date as that of DCP Jones.

Deputy Jones claims to be “personally and directly affected” by the decision as it “strips him of any seniority he had over Dr Rosado.”

With Guzman out of the running, due to retire next year, at issue is the successor of Williams as Commissioner. Two weeks after the decision, Williams explicitly told reporters in Belmopan that “We have 2 deputies who are of the same date of appointment.” Two weeks after that, Minister of Home Affairs Kareem Musa concurred in terms of the seniority issue: “I would say in terms of the date of your appointment, yes. But you don’t get the title [of] senior deputy if that is what you are asking. You don’t get a special title.”

We’ll keep following the story.

 

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