NATION

Cop To Minister: Police Penalty In Road Accidents Too Harsh

A Police officer in Labasa says the penalty for officers who were involved in road accidents was too harsh. The officer who did not wish to be identified raised this
03 May 2017 11:00
Cop To Minister: Police Penalty In Road Accidents Too Harsh
The Minister for Defence and National Ratu Inoke Kubuabola (middle) with some Northern Police officers at the Labasa Police Station Command Centre on 02.05.17. Photo: Josaia Ralago

A Police officer in Labasa says the penalty for officers who were involved in road accidents was too harsh.

The officer who did not wish to be identified raised this concern to Minister for Defence and National Security Ratu Inoke Kubuabola during his visit to the North.

The officer said that an officer would be tried twice, first internally for the breach of the Police Act and again by the Court System.

“This is too harsh and I am requesting if you could look into this please,” the officer said.

Ratu Inoke said; “That is the present policy and also the law and also the Police Act. So I am happy to hear that the Commissioner of Police (Brigadier-General) Sitiveni Qiliho is reviewing this which is good.”

Meanwhile, Ratu Inoke said they working towards solving the shortage of Police officers which was not at par with international standards.

There is a great shortage of manpower within the Fiji Police Force that in some areas a Police officer can be tasked with over 1000 people in the area, he said.

Ratu Inoke said it should be one Police officer to 400 people as set by international standards.

Ratu Inoke said the reform structure that was being tabled by the Fiji Police Force would help them recruit more officers to address this problem.

“The Commissioner of Police was coming up with a new structure and I have to agree, because of my trip around Viti Levu and Vanua Levu, I have noticed that there is a shortage of Police officers,” Ratu Inoke said.

“And I also mentioned that in Parliament last week that the Police stations and Police posts are under manned.

“So the Commissioner of Police (Brigadier-General) Sitiveni Qiliho is already handling that with the Minister for Economy Aiyaz Saiyed-Khaiyum, to be able address this.

“The international standard is one Police officer per 400 members of the public.

“We are hoping and praying that we are able to take in more officers.”

He added that in some areas like Lekutu Police station in Bua, the ratio was one Police officer to 1100 people.

Edited by Ranoba Baoa

Feedback:  josaia.ralago@fijisun.com.fj

 

 

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