Another situation almost escalated in Parliament on Wednesday when two plain clothes Police Officers took turns pretending to be reporters while sitting at the press table in the National Assembly.
When day three of the meeting of the Committee of Supply commenced on Wednesday, the journalists noticed a strange person sitting at the press table but raised no alarm. However, as the day progressed, and it was observed that the stranger made no attempt to fit in nor communicate with other journalists, this left reporters suspicious.
That suspicion was heightened when the first stranger was replaced by a second one, who acted in the same manner. It was also observed that the second stranger had a bulge at his waist, resulting in many of the journalists believing that he may have been armed.
As such, a complaint was lodged with the Clerk of the National Assembly, Sherlock Isaacs, who immediately investigated. He reported that the officers were there on assignment but was unable to determine who authorised the assignment.
The officers were immediately summoned and ordered to leave the precinct of the Public Buildings which they did.
It was also related that acting Police Commissioner David Ramnarine, had no idea as to who authorised the officers to work undercover in the National Assembly.
He promised to investigate and determine who ordered that the officers’ presence be in the National Assembly and that they impersonate journalists at the press table.
Isaacs told reporters that the officers had no permission to sit at the press table and added that they were improperly attired as well.
He noted that the National Assembly gives permission to have two undercover officers from the Special Branch along with two uniformed female officers in the public gallery at every Sitting of the House.
When contacted, A Division (Georgetown-East Bank Demerara) Commander, Marlon Chapman told this publication that the incident was a “genuine mix up” that was “rectified” but did not indulge in further details.
The incident once again raises the question of the safety of Parliamentarians and all those within the confines of the Parliamentary Chambers during every Sitting of the House.
Just last Friday, the greater public saw the invasion of the National Assembly by a woman dressed as Santa Claus ringing a bell and carrying a dictionary along with other paraphernalia.
Her invasion seemed to have been well-planned, since it happened as soon as most of the Government Ministers left the Chambers.