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  HOME | Venezuela (Click here for more Venezuela news)

TalCual: Venezuela's 'Supercop' Freddy Bernal Comes to the Rescue
Public security is the subject where the Venezuelan revolution has gotten all the F's for sure. Its ultimate solution: appointing Freddy Bernal to reform the nation's police system

By TalCual

Public security is the subject where the Venezuelan revolution has gotten all the F's for sure. Since it came to power back in 1999, it has implemented more than 20 contingency plans to fight crime – more than one per year –, a fact that really proves it has no serious plans regarding this matter.

The huge amount of crimes committed every day in the country proves it as well. It's not a matter of perception or having a feeling, as once said the Ombudswoman Gabriela Ramírez, because is something tangible and even deadly most of the times.

Now then, the ultimate solution has been that of appointing PSUV lawmaker Freddy Bernal as head of the "Presidential Commission for the Transformation of the Police System." Without a doubt, we dare to say that failure will be the outcome, as has happened before with all the other initiatives of the Revolution.

Remember the security perimeters dubbed as "quadrants"? Some of our readers may think we are jumping to hasty conclusions, but we don't think so.

Bernal was a police officer, but also was the Mayor of Caracas Libertador municipality for 8 years, and the police force of this municipality was not – nor is it – an example to follow. Complaints on several irregularities committed by officers of this police corps were rife, without Bernal doing anything about it.

As part of his first assignment, the first thing he comes up with is the creation of subcommittees. Nothing new under the sun. The first of them is meant for analyzing legal regulations and simplifying procedures. This has got to be a joke, because PSUV parliamentarians have had an absolute majority in the National Assembly since 2005, in addition to passing at least two enabling laws that granted special powers to the President of the Republic ever since, enough time to having reformed all the laws that had to be reformed.

The second subcommittee has a name that says a lot: "Bolivarian Police Profile." This name because, according to Bernal, police officers must embrace the Bolivarian socialist doctrine as already did the Armed Forces. This doesn't bode well. With great audacity, Bernal dares to confess that the intention here is not to politicize the nation's police forces, something impossible to believe.

The third subcommittee is about the profile and curriculum of prevention and investigation, which will take care of revising the study programs as well as the ranks and profiles of the police officers. Apparently Bernal is not quite satisfied with the current curriculum of the so-called "University of Safety," responsible for training the officers of the National Police. This university was recently created, a reason for which its curriculum is supposed to be up to date.

What does Soraya El Achkar, the former rector of this university, have to say about this subcommittee? Another of the subcommittees will analyze the structures of the police forces, something that is assumed it has already been done by the Interior and Justice Ministry, which was devoted to intervene regional and municipal police forces for some time. Haven't they already carried out that study in the ministry? The next subcommittee is for knowing what the people want from their policemen. Is a subcommittee like this necessary at all? What people want is them to be honest, and that they do their job with efficiency and professionalism.

The last subcommittee was thought up for ensuring the integrity of the police officers, something we deem necessary because criminals are murdering them without any compassion, just like the rest of common citizens.

Actually what these first decisions made by Bernal and his people make is to demonstrate the little importance for the security issue by those ruling the country for the last fifteen years. The creation of the National Police seemed to us the only serious attempt to address the problem, but it looks like it didn't live up to the expectations. The rest is nothing but publicity to make believe the issue is being dealt with, but the reality is that crime rules in the streets of Venezuela.

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