Mmegi Blogs :: The Police are a law unto themselves
Last Updated
Monday 24 September 2018, 15:01 pm.
The Police are a law unto themselves

If you are a motor driver or you are licensed to operate a vehicle on the road, your worst fears are always raised when you approach a police roadblock.
By Richard Moleofe Wed 16 Nov 2016, 19:01 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Blogs :: The Police are a law unto themselves

There is virtually no country in the world where there is never a roadblock. So if you have some sort of phobia for this, then the best place for you would be planet mars.

Roadblocks are mounted for various reasons. I remember in the 1980’s when I was living temporarily in Zambia, there were 14 roadblocks between the town of Livingstone and the city of Lusaka.

The main reason for so many stumbles on the road was for the reason that South African Commandos were always in the horizons wanting to infiltrate and kill the ANC in exile.

The Zambian roadblocks provided a solid wall of protection on the citizens and all those who were visiting. Therefore the public had no issues with the multiple roadblocks that often slowed down the five hour trip to eight.

It seems in Botswana the police are not interested in what I can call public buy-in regarding their roadblocks.  Some police officers think I have a penchant of attacking them and making their work difficult. I simply echo the views of my public because it is not everyone who will get an opportunity to write to a newspaper and express their views.

The public are enraged at the way they are treated by the police. We have to overcome that era when the police were used as scaremongers on us as children.  Now that we have become parents, it is then that we are often at loggerheads with the same police that were used as scaremongers when we were children.    

The police are out on a rampage on our roads. Unlike the Zambians, our public feels less safe in that the police are continually emptying their pockets.

No one wants to lose their hard earned cash in these tough times. Even government is decrying the fact that the state coffers are low. So where do we get money when government is broke?

I am made to understand that the police have targets from their superiors on the amounts they should collect each day. This has laid immeasurable pressure on junior officers who have no choice but to fulfil the demands.

I think the police are being unfair on the public. What if we would require the same thing from our police and demand a reduction in crime by 50%. We know the primary purpose of the existence of this institution is to protect the public from criminal elements and according to the current statistics; the police are failing in this area.

We really don’t have a problem with the police working on our roads as a measure to reduce accidents. But the fact that they have financial targets to meet is an insult to the citizens of this country. Because the police have been instructed to squeeze life out of the citizens, the poor officers have had little choice but to act according to the


instructions of the commissioners.

The fact that flagging of vehicles has been introduced as a measure to combat non-payment of traffic fines, this should make life easy for both the public and the police. In fact, flagging has contributed immensely to the reduction of defaulters of traffic fines.

With the flagging system in place, I wonder why the police would still insist in imposing spot fines.

The moment a driver receives a fine, they must know that their vehicle stands the risk of being flagged until such a time when they have honoured their payments. Therefore there is no need for spot fines.

South African Police have introduced spot fines particularly for non-citizens. Over time, non-citizens have not honoured the traffic fines they have received. In instances where you are caught speeding over the prevailing limits and you are unable to pay the fine, the traffic officer is obliged to give a grace period of about two weeks before an appearance in court. This automatically would drive the offender to pay the fine.

For some unknown reason, the police have awoken to an archaic law that they are lording over the citizens.

According to section 151 of the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Act of 1965, the police are empowered to detain a motor vehicle regardless of how minor the offence may be. This is why they would charge a motorist for a defective indicator light and go to the extent of detaining the vehicle if a spot payment fails to materialise.

It is only upon the good will of a police officer that a motorist may be allowed to proceed with their journey. There should not be any reason why a sober driver should not be allowed to proceed with their journey on a defective indicator.  It does not jeopardise the safety of the vehicle occupants as well as other road users. In a case where this happens at night, the police may have some legitimacy in interrupting a trip. 

In the first place, a traffic offence is not a criminal act. So it is erroneously placed under this section and there is certainly so much need to review this 1965 law.

We must remember that at the time of Independence we entirely depended on the British for the creation of our laws. Where laws are definitely hurting the people it is supposed to serve, then that deserves the attention of parliament to effect changes.

The Commissioner of Police must guide this process that will lead to the harmonisation of the laws.  The flagging system is a perfect tool in enforcement. This must be used to enhance police work and serve the public as well.

The police must not be seen as agitators but rather, they must create an atmosphere where the public views them as enablers. With that attitude in place, there will be little room for bribes.

Subscribe to our Newsletter

The Ex Soldier
Wed 16 Nov 2016, 19:01 pm
Fri 04 Nov 2016, 19:41 pm
Fri 28 Oct 2016, 16:07 pm
Fri 21 Oct 2016, 18:45 pm
Fri 14 Oct 2016, 07:10 am
Fri 07 Oct 2016, 16:15 pm
Wed 28 Sep 2016, 16:14 pm
Fri 23 Sep 2016, 16:03 pm
Fri 16 Sep 2016, 15:05 pm
Fri 09 Sep 2016, 14:45 pm
Fri 02 Sep 2016, 14:55 pm
Fri 26 Aug 2016, 14:57 pm
Fri 19 Aug 2016, 15:16 pm
Fri 12 Aug 2016, 17:34 pm
Fri 05 Aug 2016, 12:21 pm
Fri 29 Jul 2016, 12:52 pm
Fri 22 Jul 2016, 12:58 pm
Fri 15 Jul 2016, 12:14 pm
Fri 08 Jul 2016, 15:27 pm
Thu 30 Jun 2016, 12:25 pm
Fri 24 Jun 2016, 18:01 pm
Fri 17 Jun 2016, 14:21 pm
Fri 10 Jun 2016, 12:44 pm
Fri 03 Jun 2016, 15:08 pm
Fri 27 May 2016, 10:09 am
Exchange Rates
FOREIGN EXCHANGE: Wednesday, 17 Jan 2018
1 USD = Pula   9.7656
1 GBP = Pula   13.4590
1 EUR = Pula   11.9617
1 YEN = Pula   0.0882
1 ZAR = Pula   0.7938
1 Pula = USD   0.1024
1 Pula = GBP   0.0743
1 Pula = EUR   0.0836
1 Pula = YEN   11.34
1 Pula = ZAR   1.2597
Subscribe to our Newsletter
have a story? Send us a Tip
  • Previous
    Masa Centre
    ::: Monday 24 Sep - Monday 24 Sep :::
  • Previous
    ::: Monday 24 Sep - Monday 24 Sep :::
  • Previous
    The Meg
    ::: Friday 10 Aug - Sunday 07 Aug :::
    The Meg
istanbul escort