After he demits office on Thursday, Royal Bahamas Defence Force (RBDF) Commodore Tellis Bethel will take up a position in the Ministry of National Security, Minister of National Security Marvin Dames said yesterday.
Dames said RBDF Acting Commodore Dr. Raymond King will take over command of the defense force.
While Dames said the move is not a demotion, he did not disclose what role Bethel will fill in the ministry.
“He won’t be going too far,” he said outside Cabinet.
“He will be moving over to the Ministry of National Security. And we will be happy to have him there. We have a lot of work for him to do there and we are certain that he will bring a tremendous amount of knowledge and expertise to the job that we have for him.”
Dames added, “He will have a senior level position and it will fit right into his skill set.”
He said Bethel will fill that position in the ministry “almost immediately” after he demits his office.
Bethel has been on leave since October, and the details surrounding his future with the defense force were unclear for months.
At the time, the decision to remove Bethel had raised eyebrows among some observers given that the RBDF was instrumental in Hurricane Dorian relief efforts on Grand Bahama and Abaco, where security concerns on the ground persisted in the immediate aftermath.
Dames said yesterday that he did not disclose the plans for Bethel because he doesn’t believe matters involving other people should be aired out in the public.
“This is no different from any other situation like this,” he said.
“And think [it’s] the fact of who it is and it’s been played out in the media.
“This is a very sensitive situation. And when you’re dealing with persons retiring or demitting office, I am of the view that that is not something you conduct in the press.
“You cannot conduct the affairs of another in the press. I don’t think that’s a responsible thing to do. And I don’t think that’s the right thing to do.”
Dames said the moving on of senior officers is important for the growth of organizations like the defense force.
“Any successful organization must take on succession planning and career development,” he said.
“You must prepare people to take over.”