Minister wants standardized salaries for DPPs

National Security Minister, Hermangild Francis, has proposed that the salaries of Directors of Public Prosecutions (DPPs) throughout the region be standardized.

Saint Lucia’s quest to have the vacant post of DPP filled has encountered a problem of the salary scale not being attractive enough for interested applicants, it has been reported.

“My sense is that the persons who have met the criteria, the salary scale here is not in keeping with the rest of the Caribbean, “ Hermangild Francis told the Times.

The National Security Minister asserted that there was need to look at the standardization of salaries, bearing in mind the cost of living in the various countries of the region.

He disclosed that in Antigua a DPP gets about $22,000 monthly, whereas in Anguilla the figure is about $21, 000, but in Saint Lucia, $13,000 monthly.

“We cannot attract the caliber of person that we want and it is proving very difficult,” the Minister said of the hunt to find a replacement for Victoria Charles-Clarke who vacated the post of DPP in March this year, after proceeding on preretirement leave in December 2015.

Francis told the Times that having a DPP in place is essential.

As a result the Minister explained that the government is taking steps to upgrade the salary scale of the DPP from grade 20 to 21.

However, he said that does not solve the problem.

Prime Minister, Allen Chastanet, in a recent interview with the Times had disclosed that the appointment of a DPP was essential to address a number of judicial matters.

He also said that the appointment was crucial to proceeding with the IMPACS case regarding alleged extrajudicial killings by local police.

Chastanet disclosed that once the DPP  gets involved, a Special Prosecutor will be appointed to determine the quality of the evidence and whether the case can proceed.

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