SHURELY shome mishtake. First Minister Peter Robinson declared that one of his non-negotiable terms for devolving policing and justice was the retention of the full-time reserve.
Surely the DUP will have realised through its membership of the Policing Board that the Chief Constable will hold primacy in terms of operational decision-making.
The Board may approve or reject such decisions, and can veto the actions to a certain extent, but have that self-same board ever permanently stopped an operational decision. Tasers? Closure of bases?
The devolution of policing powers of course means there will be a Policing Board, an Assembly Committee on Policing and Justice, and District Policing Partnerships.
And that means there will be no actual policing done. All the senior officers will be at meetings, and all the junior ranks will be helping prepare the information for the senior officers.
Which of course explains why Matt Baggott and his creed of community policing won him the appointment: his message to the community will be ‘go police yourself, we’re in a meeting.’