SPECIAL REPORT Commissioners Early Retirement:

Leo Olivero

Key reasons for a Judge led inquiry

I whole heartedly welcome the inquiry announced by the Chief Minister into the early retirement of Ian McGrail former Commissioner of Police. Maybe not, for the exact same reasons (as you will read) as Mr Picardo announced or the tittle-tattle he mentioned. But because in my opinion, additionally, the ‘terms of reference’ of the inquiry should be widen much further than the initial areas loosely intimated by the CM in Parliament last Friday.

This news of the inquiry, in many ways, would not have surprised regular Panorama readers, especially, where it concerns policing in general, and particularly, over recent years where the question of constitutional obligations has been raised in this newspaper by this reporter!

Panorama Had Exclusively Reported on a Developing Situation

On the 9 June the RGP Commissioner of Police announced his sudden retirement.

As readers will recall, days before, I exclusively reported in Panorama regarding the deteriorating situation between the Gibraltar Government and the RGP Police Commissioner where a ‘a curtain of silence had fallen’ on what was and is, a very significant and important matter and one of huge public interest. I further reported ‘it was a developing situation that was potentially affecting public safety and the application and enforcement of laws, especially out at sea’!

I also highlighted, that ‘nothing looked or felt right about the whole matter involving the Commissioner of Police. But I had no doubt, it confirmed to me at least, recent Panorama reports and others going back even further, how the overseeing, control and the administration of policing in Gibraltar, including the welfare of officers, has been diabolically and irresponsible handled, mostly by those who hold or have a Constitutional Responsibility for the RGP!

Panorama reported how the RGP were in turmoil, and questioned why the situation with the RGP and the Commissioner had been allowed to reach a stage, where all concerned were not prepared to inform the public of this serious situation of national public interest!

Subsequently, in what appeared to be a synchronised low-key response from No 6, the Convent and the Gibraltar Police Authority (GPA) to the Commissioner’s retirement announcement very short press statements were issued within a 15 minutes interval it seemed of each other. Although none, reflected any sentiment of regret, disappointment or shock. Particularly, when you think, this is someone holding an important top public senior position, who suddenly decided to call it a day?