By Theckla Gunga – EMTV News, Port Moresby
Police commissioner, Gari Baki, has declared 2016 as the year of Discipline.
This follows recent allegations levelled against the Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary, on police brutality and the breakdown on command and control.
Baki’s declaration comes in response to Prime Minister Peter O’Neill’s intention to weed out ill-disciplined officers and create a good image for the constabulary.
Commissioner Baki said commanders will be held accountable to ensure that the disciplinary process within the constabulary is strictly enforced nationwide.
“I declare 2016 as the year of discipline,” Commissioner Baki said.
He described police brutality as abnormal police behaviour and goes against the fundamental duty and function of a police officer.
Between 2007 and 2014, the constable Internal Affairs Directorate registered over 1,600 cases of police brutality.
Over 300 were classified as criminal cases implicating the RPNGC members and more than 270 officers were dismissed from the force.
Since last Tuesday, at least four police officers in Port Moresby were arrested and charged for sexual assaults, malicious damage to state property and armed robbery.
Following recent media publications on the ill-disciplinary actions by police officers, the public have questioned the kind of training police recruits under go at the Bomana Police Training College.
This afternoon, the Police head stated that training at Bomana is the best there is and the public cannot blame the college for the ill-disciplinary actions taken by individual officers while on duty.
In another interview with NCD and Central divisional commander, Sylvester Kalaut, the assistant commissioner made similar remarks stating that the recruitment process will be tighten as a measure to restore command and control.
“The recruiting process needs to be revised so the best candidates are selected to join the force,” commander Kalaut said.
Following the declaration, a number of initiatives will be introduced into the force to minimise police brutality cases and transform the constabulary into a trusted community oriented police service.