‘Just Serve And Protect’: A Plea to LNP From Former Inspector General
When police officers’ actions coincide with the death of a community member, it leaves a lot of strain on the police-community relationship, derailing trust and undermining the service’s legitimacy.
Like every other business in the provision of service, customers must be king even for policing service. Unfortunately, this is becoming false unarguably, at different levels in most parts of the world.
Depending on the system failures in various countries, the decline in service provided by the police beams a bright reflection on the area that has failed – systematic corruption, racial discrimination, economic injustice, poverty, etc. The real and ultimate power to protect oneself is the one resident within. Back in the days of old, families came together, forming communities.
The communities empowered some of its members of good standing to protect them until governments could establish more structured systems to provide the service of protection and enforce laws and that give birth to policing. All the community is expecting from the police is to ‘just serve and protect.’ Its time to step out of the cruisers and remove the dark glasses to reach out to the communities and let them know that the intent is right and honorable.
Sir Robert Peel, the father of modern policing, must be turning around in his grave with the ongoing stark contradiction of his modern policing principles and total disregard for its core value in many places around the world. The sixth of the nine principles of Sir Peal reads: “To use physical force only when the exercise of persuasion, advice, and warning is found to be insufficient to obtain public cooperation to an extent necessary to secure observance of the law or to restore order, and to use only the minimum degree of physical force which is necessary on any particular occasion for achieving a police objective.”
George Floyd and thousands of others around the world whose incidents were not captured by the lenses would have been here today if we had just served and protected their rights to life. If this doesn’t wake up the powers that be, then I do not know what will. At this point, the call goes beyond the concept of ‘Security Sector Reform’ as it will adequately address the effects and on to systemic reform as a means of correcting the cause.