Prime Minister Philip Davis’ Remarks at Royal Bahamas Police Force Headquarters Visit

Good afternoon.

I want to thank the Commissioner of Police, the Assistant Commissioners, and the Chief Superintendent — and their excellent teams — for taking some of their valuable time to update the Bahamian people this afternoon on the important work they’re doing.

We have had a tragic start to 2024, with an outbreak of gang violence and a series of retaliations. One homicide is one too many. But to start the year this way, with one after another – our families and our communities are grieving, angry, in pain, and afraid.

That’s why it’s important, I think, to share some of the developments that are underway, so that Bahamians know that while making enduring progress on crime requires solving multiple, complex, stubborn, and interwoven problems, there can indeed be light at the end of this dark tunnel. 

We are implementing a detailed plan that addresses prevention, policing, prosecution, punishment, and rehabilitation.

Tomorrow, I will be making the case in Parliament for tough new changes to the existing bail law, so that violations of bail conditions will no longer be tolerated – and lead to revocation of bail for the accused. 

And I also want gang members to understand: You are going to run out of places to hide.

For two years, the police have been testing and evaluating facial recognition CCTV, with extraordinary success, and are now launching a major expansion of this technology.

This technology can identify faces, and license plate numbers, and detect guns.

We have emphasized the importance of collaboration – not just across different branches and agencies of government, but with the public as well.

Many businesses, large and small, have agreed to be part of this major CCTV expansion. If you haven’t onboarded already, I urge you to call National Security or SSI.  

Every camera we add will make a difference in our ability to prevent and detect crime, and apprehend criminals.

We have very skillful and serious investigators, and this technology is going to support and impact their work.

I’m going to let the police take things from here, and close by saying that what matters most is results – and we think you get results with determination, collaboration, evidence-based technology tools, and resources. 

To our dedicated police officers, headed by the Commissioner of Police Clayton Fernander: 

Know this: you have the full backing of your government. We are investing in training for your officers, and equipping you with the necessary tools to protect our communities. Your courage and your commitment to duty are the backbone of our nation’s security.

I know you, in turn, will join me in inviting all Bahamians to offer their support and vigilance. Report crimes, support our law enforcement, and stand together as a community. Together, we will build a safer, stronger Bahamas for everyone.

Thank you.