NATION

Passion Drives Community Policing Officer

  Serving isolated communities deep within the ranges of Kavanagasau in the interior of Nadroga is nothing new to Community Policing Officer, Peceli Lasilevu. The 47-year-old has been based at
09 Jun 2018 10:00
Passion Drives Community  Policing Officer
Second from right: Kavanagasau Police Post Community Policing officer Peceli Lasilevu with residents of Nabitu Settlement on June 6, 2018. Photo: Arieta Vakasukawaqa

 

Serving isolated communities deep within the ranges of Kavanagasau in the interior of Nadroga is nothing new to Community Policing Officer, Peceli Lasilevu.

The 47-year-old has been based at Kavanagasau Police Post since 2004.

Working with the community is his newfound passion having served in two separate peacekeeping duties in Lebanon whe with the Republic of the Fiji Military Forces.

He was recruited into the military in 1987 then went for his first tour of peacekeeping duties in 1988 and the second in 2000.

Mr Lasilevu then joined the Territorial Forces upon his return before he was recruited into the Fiji Police Force in 2004.

His area of work consists of nine villages, 10 big farming settlements, two health centres and schools along the way.

“Working with the community is something I love doing, especially in an environment where you don’t have means of resources to carry out your work,” Mr Lasilevu said.

“This is something I’ve done during peacekeeping duties in Lebanon. To work with the people during difficult situations.

“I’ve managed to build a strong bond with the people of these communities and it has enabled them to gain the confidence to speak up about any issues they face, which makes my work a lot easier.

“Transport problem is one of the main challenges we face here at Kavanagasau Police Post, but that doesn’t deter me from carrying out my job.

“Sometimes I walk for three hours to visit a community or even lucky enough to hitch a ride in one of the cars,” he added.

If any problem arises, Mr Lasilevu said they would request Sigatoka Police Station to deploy a vehicle, which would take another 45 minutes or more than an hour to reach them.

“The problem is that the communities are isolated from each other like for example the furthest community I’ve went to was three hours of walking under the hot sun and gravel dusty road,” he said.

“You need to have the passion and heart to work under trying circumstances in order to survive in this profession.

“Sometimes when there is no transport we have to go by horse rides in order to reach our communities or leave our families for days to attend to any case.”

Edited by Percy Kean

Feedback:  arieta.vakasukawaqa@fijisun.com.fj

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