Drew Harris to remain as Garda Commissioner until 2025
An Garda Síochána Commissioner Drew Harris has had his term of office extended to 2025.
The extension was approved by the Irish Government on Tuesday (February 15) following a proposal from the Minister for Justice Helen McEntee.
Mr Harris, a former deputy chief constable of the Police Service of Northern Ireland, took up the post in 2018. He was the first Garda commissioner to be appointed from outside the jurisdiction .
His original five-year term of office had been due to expire in September next year. Mr Harris will now stay as commissioner until June 2025, when he will reach the current statutory retirement age of 60.
Ms McEntee said: “The Garda Commissioner, Drew Harris, is rightly held in high esteem by the public and is widely acknowledged as having done an exemplary job since he was appointed in September 2018.
“As well as his role in leading our national policing and security service, the commissioner has introduced very significant reforms and driven the ongoing programme of reform in An Garda Síochána.
“The organisation is currently entering a critical phase with the rollout of the new operating model, and the forthcoming passage and implementation of the Policing, Security and Community Safety Bill. The extension of the Commissioner’s term of office will bring a welcome clarity and continuity of leadership to An Garda Síochána through the vital period ahead.
“I look forward to continuing to work with the Commissioner over the coming years.”
Mr Harris was appointed by the Irish Government in 2018 following an international recruitment competition run by the Public Appointments Service on behalf of the Policing Authority, and took up his post on September 3.
In a statement, Mr Harris said: “It is a great privilege and honour to be Garda Commissioner.
“During the last four years, the organisation has made great progress in becoming an efficient and effective human-rights focused policing and security service.
“In particular, the work by Garda personnel during the Covid-19 pandemic was a real demonstration of the organisation’s commitment to keeping people safe through our ethos of policing by consent and in partnership with communities.
“However, while we have made many significant changes to the organisation in recent years, the pandemic also meant that we had to put on hold some of the elements of our reform programme that we had planned to introduce.
“I look forward to leading An Garda Síochána in providing the best possible policing and security service to the people of Ireland.”
This year marks the 100th anniversary of the establishment of An Garda Síochána.
In partnership with the Public Appointments Service, it recently commenced a recruitment campaign for an additional 800 new Garda recruits this year.