KEETMANSHOOP – Police officers in the //Kharas Region must not use unnecessary force during crime prevention efforts. //Kharas police commissioner, David Indongo, told members of the force that firearms must only be used as a last resort. He was speaking during the launch of Operation Usalama VI at Keetmanshoop last week.
“You should not fire at a running vehicle or person as a means to stop suspects. There are other ways to apprehend suspects,” Indongo said. He further advised them to rather coordinate with other police stations nearby, including setting up roadblocks to facilitate the apprehension of would-be suspects. Indongo further reasoned that the illegal consignment of dried fish, confiscated recently at the Keetmanshoop roadblock, could be regarded as a clear indication that criminal activities are taking place in the region.
“Other ambush roadblocks will be erected in hotspot areas and all police stations in the //Kharas Region,” the commander warned. He further warned police officers to refrain from giving information on operations in advance to criminals, since it undermines the application of crime prevention.
“You cannot work for two organisations; you are employed by government only,” Indongo added. He continued by reprimanding members who have no sense of punctuality at work, leaving their posts unattended; he assured that it can lead to disciplinary measures to be taken against them. “Be vigilant and concentrate on whatever criminal movements you might observe”. He then urged the public to always cooperate with law enforcement authorities in the region. “The annual festive crime and road safety operation will start at the right time and place,” Indongo concluded.
Usalama is a Swahili word, which means security. It was first launched in 2013 between Sarpco (Southern African Police Chief Operations) and Eapco (Eastern African Police Chief Operations). It was further declared an annual police operation, and it will run concurrently with the current Operation Kalahari Desert.
The main objectives of operation Usalama are, amongst others, to weaken, disrupt and dismantle organised criminal groups, identify new modus operandi being used by criminal syndicates, conduct investigations, arrest and prosecute offenders, and to enlist public and private sector support in the fight against organised crimes in the South.