Local PSNI boss Chief Supt Darrin Jones had been due to take part in an online meeting with members of Derry City and Strabane District Council this afternoon to discuss a range of issues, including the police’s handing of a number of recent incidents in Derry.
However, the meeting has been cancelled.
Sinn Fein’s group leader Councillor Sandra Duffy said the failure of the PSNI to attend the special council meeting won’t deter the party from raising issues and concerns on policing.
Said Cllr Duffy: “We are obviously disappointed at the PSNI’s decision because this meeting had been arranged to discuss matters around policing which are extremely important.
“My party had tabled a number of questions to be discussed at the meeting around the high level of stop and search incidents in this city and several recent PSNI operations which fell well below the standards of community policing that we expect to see.
“We will continue to raise these matters through the PSNI accountability structures including the Policing Board and the local policing and community safety partnership.
“The PSNI needs to reconsider its decision and schedule a new meeting with the council because these are hugely important issues and Sinn Féin will not be deterred from raising them.”
Aontú councillor Emmet Doyle hit out at its late cancellation.
“It’s absolutely unacceptable for the District Commander to pull out of this meeting at all, never mind hours before the meeting was due to take place,” said Cllr Doyle.
“My original motion calling him to Council was due to his officers’ conduct in the community and I make no apologies for that.
“This tone deaf approach by PSNI leadership sends out a message to us and the wider community that they want to hide from public scrutiny and potentially gives succour to those who point to the PSNI’s approach as being ‘same old, same old’.
“Aontú have no intention of letting this issue lie.
“Public servants are to be accountable and the leadership of the PSNI locally and regionally can’t continue to quote the PCSP when members of the body also voted for them to come to answer questions.
“I don’t know who the PSNI think they are, but this approach will not stand.”Tags: