The continuous ill-disciplined actions of several police officers continue to come under the spotlight from the public which has raised serious questions about discipline within the force and its integrity.
This came following reports claiming several police officers are consuming alcohol in their bus while travelling back into town from Mamara over the weekend.
The incident occurred on Saturday afternoon where a white 25-seater bus owned by the Royal Solomon Islands Police Force (RSIPF) was seen travelling from Doma, North West Guadalcanal. It was caught driving carelessly with empty beer cans being thrown out of the window.
One eye witness has uploaded the picture of the bus on the Forum Solomon Islands International (FSII) face book and questioned whether such attitude or behaviour of officers deserve them (police) being rearmed.
The police bus registered G3590 was believed to have loaded with police officers returning from a picnic.
A concerned senior citizen has questioned whether such practice is now allowed under the country’s laws.
“I’m confused because I thought it was the police who should be the role models and show good examples to the public because they are the ones who keep the law and order in the country.
“But now that such practice of drink driving is becoming a common practice by police officers. That makes me to question if drink driving is now allowed in moving vehicles in the country? The concerned citizen who wishes to withhold his name questioned.
He said such practice requires a proper investigation and that those found guilty must be disciplined for their actions.
The senior citizen said such action is a signal of an unorganised, ill-disciplined and failed force.
Meanwhile many FSII members condemned the unlawful acts by these police officers and called on the acting commissioner of police to investigate this incident and discipline those involved.
In a statement FSII said most of their members expressed fear that such actions undermines police behaviors and seriously questions the rearmament program announced by the government. Some said if police can easily break minor laws, how can the public trust them with firearms?
A police officer who is also a FSII member said police needs evidence. “None of us wants our country to be on its knee and don’t believe every police boss and ranks appreciate corruption.”
He reminded members that if anyone has something, it is advisable to report it with evidences so that proper discipline procedures are done.
“The actions by the concern officers are shameful and must be condemned in the strongest manner,” FSII said in a statement over the weekend.
“We urge the police commissioner to launch an investigation and if proven guilty, proper disciplinary actions must be taken against officers involved to ensure RSIPF is free from rogue officers”, the FSII statement urged.
The FSII statement said RSIPF must work hard to regain public trust and confidence; hence little as it may seem but minor incidences like drinking in a moving Police vehicle will undoubtedly fueled mistrust and no-confidence in our Police force which continuously struggled to regain public trust and confidence.
FSII encouraged the public to report any unusual acts of Police officers to help the Police Executive weed out rogue officers from RSIPF.
“We need a strong, disciplined, neutral and impartial Police Force that display the RSIPF professional code of ethics at all times, both on and off duty,” the FSII statement concludes.
When contacted by the Solomon Star yesterday about the claims deputy police commissioner operations said if this report is true then it is unacceptable.
David Diosi said now that this is an issue the executive will have to look at it and see how best to address it.
He added further enquiries are needed into the report to verify the report.
Mr Diosi then calls on the public to report any issues regarding officers’ actions to the commissioner’s office so that proper actions can be taken against the officers.
By Daniel Namosuaia