Minister of National Security Martin Joseph has warned that all police vehicles will be monitored via Global Positioning System (GPS) to ensure that there is no mismanagement of the police fleet. He was speaking at the PNM's political meeting at Market Square, Point Fortin. Joseph said between 2000 and 2002, Government purchased 956 vehicles for the police. "The police now have a stack of vehicles, numbering 1425, so there is no reason when citizens call a police station for officers to say they have no vehicles. What is missing is the management of the fleet, and we will use VMCOTT as the fleet management agency," Joseph said.
He explained that VMCOTT will be responsible for procuring, repairs, maintenance and disposal of all police vehicles. "Moreover, all of these vehicles will be equipped with GPS so the vehicles' locations will be known at all times and this will remove the inappropriate use of police vehicles so we know where they are at all times. The GPS will be integrated with computer despatch system and will be the computer integrated platform of the Ministry of National Security. The GPS is field tested and vehicles will be equipped with computers so we could get real time number plates. VMCOTT will ensure there is a full complement of vehicles at all times and this will improve the response times," Joseph said.
He said Government would also improve the manpower in the Coast Guard to ensure effective patrolling of T&T's waters. He said T&T had a high crime rate because of its location which made it a major transshipment point for drugs flowing from the South American mainland to Europe and North America. "We can say tonight that your Government purchased six 30-metre fast patrols crafts, two 46 coastal patrol vessels and fourteen 10-12 metres interceptor crafts for the Coast Guard. This brings our complement of vessels to 28," Joseph said.