Zimbabwe police officers shaffling continues

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THE redeployment of police officers will cascade to lower ranks as Government is restructuring the Zimbabwe Republic Police into an effective people oriented police service, a Cabinet Minister has said.

The ZRP has embarked on a restructuring process which has seen some senior police officers being redeployed.

Home Affairs and Culture Minister Dr Obert Mpofu said the restructuring exercise is a result of unprofessionalism by some police officers.

“We are trying to re-sensitise them and we will deploy them in different areas. We want to start from their leadership and try to re-assign them. We are doing that exercise up to the lower ranks. We want people to see different police officers and we are also asking you Honourable members to assist us in this exercise,” Dr Mpofu told the Senate during its Question and Answer session on Thursday.

“We are trying to shake them up a bit by removing their leaders whom we thought were no longer working properly. Some were moved to different departments. You will realise that each police officer was acting according to the way they want. Those who were doing human resources were using their own policies not known by other departments.”

He said President Mnangagwa has made the restructuring of the police a top priority for the Ministry of Home Affairs and Culture.

“The President has emphasised on restructuring the police force. It is a huge task that we are doing. You will realise that you are no longer seeing them on the streets, especially on the roadblocks, which is one of the major activities that they seemed to enjoy doing,” he said.

Dr Mpofu said police officers should have a change of mind-set.

He said some of them have stayed too long in certain communities, hence they were no longer feeling comfortable to arrest law-breakers in their areas.

“Sometimes when you befriend people for a long time, it becomes difficult to arrest them. We are trying to reshuffle them to change that mind-set. It is a very difficult operation that we are doing but what I know is, it is achievable,” the Minister said.

Dr Mpofu said some of the officers are resisting redeployments as they have started families and acquired properties where they are deployed.

“We want visibility and accountability in everything that they are doing. If a place does not have police officers or law enforcers, that is when there are crimes. You will see them all over doing what a police officer is trained to do. When someone sees a policeman, those who would want to commit crime, will think twice,” he said.

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