STOP this mockery of our first Police Authority

Gibraltar has long been asking for an independent Police Authority, and now that one is agreed, we are on the verge of making a mockery of it.

Given the many complaints in the past about a police complaints committee, where police judged police, a military man is being selected to be the first chairman of the new Police Authority.

He is Lt Col (Retired) Eddie Guerrero, who moved from the Gibraltar Regiment when he retired to a job within the Command British Forces.

It is wrong that a uniformed person should be poised to be the first chairman of the new Police Authority.

Any uniformed personnel would give the wrong impression and lead to questions being asked about the independence and credibility of the new Authority.

Why risk adverse publicity? Why not do things properly from the beginning? Why select a uniformed person to head the Authority? Why not do the right thing to gain the much-needed public support after all these years of hostile publicity?

Surely there are many competent civilians who can discharge the responsibilities and at the same time not raise questions about the independence and the credibility of a Police Authority headed by a retired army colonel!

Luckily, the appointment has not yet been fulfilled. The official statement said that Lt Col (Retd) Guerrero "will be appointed" as chairman. This is because of the overall mess this whole issue is engulfed in. It is a new body to be known as the 'Senior Appointsment Commission' that will lawfully advise the Governor on who to appoint, but this new body cannot come into force until the new constitution is accepted. What is behind the inordinate rush?

Be that as it may, this proposed appointment should be revised - and Lt Col Guerrero himself should reconsider taking on what is already an appointment which will be seen as marring the independence and the credibility of our very first Police Authority, for the reasons already explained.

Stop the mockery!.