SECTIONS

Vehicle vandalism in police stations

It is unfortunate that we are reading reports of vandalism of vehicles in police stations following towing of vehicles for traffic offenses. Whereas it is good that this is now being made public, the same is not news.

The Inspector General of police and his top hierarchy have simply not done enough to get rid of rogue officers in the force by ensuring that errant behavior is punished severely that it no longer becomes attractive to be a deviant officer.

Theft cannot happen within a police station without officers aiding and abetting such activities. The public has had enough of rogue officers....something must be done by all stake holders. Not too long ago the auditor general released a report on the lack of accountability of funds collected from road traffic offenses and in particular cash bail.

There was no formal response from the IG ....we have not seen reports of arrests of those suspected to have been involved or reports of ongoing investigations and neither have we seen announcements that will increase control and accountability within police stations with regards to cash handling on bailed offenses.

Vehicle inventories in police stations must be as basic as minimum requirements to join the force. The officers commanding or in charge of these police stations must be sacked for negligence and officers involved in theft of vehicle parts or cash bail hounded to court and  jailed for many years as a strong deterrent to others who envy such bad behavior.

Other controls that must be instituted to stem graft and bad manners amongst officers is outsourcing of towing services to reputable firms such as infama and AA. The old unroadworthy land rovers spotted along major highways and roundabouts that are frequently used by police must go away from roundabouts. One wonders why the old tow vehicles are allowed to park in non-designated areas in full view of the police with no action. Some are even parked in police stations or right outside police stations and are available for use by officers at will.

Handling of cash at stations must be limited. The police must introduce pay bill numbers for payment through use of mobile money. Credit cards, cheques and debit cards must also be allowed for transaction. This will tame the unbridled appetite for cash that has not been earned by officers in a genuine manner.

The EACC must pursue convictions from the top. Kavuludi's team must pursue sackings and other forms of disciplinary measures including demotion for negligence. We must rebuild confidence in the police force; for that to happen, everyone involved must relentlessly work to end graft.

To NTSA, complaining is not enough! You have a big role to play in policy issues related to road transport issues. You must play your role to end rogue behavior by police officers. Come up with policy that will shield the public from this nonsense.

The Chief Justice and his team must do more to educate the public on law related to traffic offenses. They must put up advertisements and campaigns on rights of motorists, pedestrians and fines applicable including discouraging officers boarding private vehicles.

The buck however stops with the IG! The bad manners displayed by his team is a reflection of his management! Let us see a lot more proactive action from him. His internal affairs team must be strengthened to assist EACC and NPSC. They must be used to pursue rogue colleagues until sanity is restored within the force.

There are undoubtedly good men and women in the force.....the rotten ones are however more prominent going by the horrific stories we read and hear about. Over to you bwana IG!