NATION

Want to be a politician? ‘Leave Fiji Police Force’

Any member of the Fiji Police Force who intends to be involved in political matters must resign and leave. That was the order from Police ch­ief of operations Assistant Comm­issioner
30 Oct 2018 12:07
Want to be a politician? ‘Leave Fiji Police Force’
Police officers in the Northern Division during the Chief of Operations Election Operation Divisional Parade at the Labasa Police Station ground on October 29, 2018. Photo: Nacanieli Tuilevuka

Any member of the Fiji Police Force who intends to be involved in political matters must resign and leave.

That was the order from Police ch­ief of operations Assistant Comm­issioner of Police Maretino Qiolevu to 147 personnel during the chief of operations election parade at the Labasa Police Station ground, yesterday.

ACP Qiolevu said this was clearly stipulated in the Electoral Act 2014.

“If you have any political aspiration or wish to get involved in political matters, do the right thing and leave,” he said.

“We don’t want to be caught in a situation where the credibility or the allegiance of our uniform is questioned. Security is vital for the integrity of the election process.

“As we enter the postal voting period, any security breaches will be blamed on us.

“The Supervisor of Elections has  emphatically stressed that we are the only institution they will work with as far as security is concerned, so attempts will be made to make us a political football during the campaign period.

“Numerous briefs and workshops were conducted to prepare you for your role. No one should have the excuse that he or she does not know what to do.”

ACP Qiolevu said professionalism would be important before and during the election period because they would be scrutinised and judged for every wrong action and word uttered. He said it was important for officers to know what to do and what not to do.

“We will not only be scrutinised by members of the public, but will also be under the watchful eye of the International Observer Group. Be aware of what is happening around you. No one knows the Northern Division better than officers here,” he said.

Manning Police stations will be on a 12-ho­ur shift basis, which will effective from Monday, November 12, to Friday, November 16. This is to allow for the smooth transition of shift changes and the redeployment of officers for the election.

Edited by Percy Kean

Feedback: nacanieli.tuilevuka@fijisun.com.fj



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