Road accidents worry new Deputy Police Commissioner
by Obusitse Kologwe
The newly appointed Deputy Police Commissioner (Support Services), Bruno Paledi, has expressed worry over road accidents in the country, saying that efforts by the police to curb the situation seem futile. Speaking during the launch of the Botswana Women Police Network Operation (Operation Sweep 2 initiative) in Francistown Thursday, the police chief said road accidents in the country are a menace as they continue to take lives.
“According to the current statistics, in June last year, we recorded 210 road accident deaths and this year we have so far recorded 184. Although the situation seems to be improving, the margin between these statistics is very small and it clearly shows that there is no improvement despite our efforts as the police,” he said.
Paledi said most of the accidents are caused by high alcohol consumption by the road users (motorists and pedestrians alike).
On Operation Sweep 2 initiative, Paledi said that such a move would give female officers an opportunity to grow as professionals who will serve their country effectively and efficiently. He said that there is need by the female police officers to find a purpose and value in their profession for them to improve their performance.
However, speaking to The Telegraph about his new position as deputy commissioner on the sidelines of the launch, Paledi said that his main ambition as he assumes office is to continue helping the police in coming up with more strategic ideas in the tackling criminal activities.
“Crime in Botswana is becoming a big concern, therefore as I assume my new position as deputy commissioner, I will endeavour to do my best to help in coming up with more strategic ways to fight crime. The public also needs to acknowledge that police officers are not only there to punish or guard against criminal activities, but they also exist to rehabilitate wrong doers as we have campaigns,” said Paledi.
He noted that for crime to be fought effectively, there is need to change the behavior of people against doing crime through campaigns. He said punishment alone cannot curb crime.
Paledi, who was promoted to the position of deputy police commissioner (support services) last week, replaces Ikwatlhaeng Bagopi who was deployed to the Ministry of Labour and Home Affairs as Permanent Secretary.
Media reports have tipped deputy police commissioner Keabetswe Makgophe as the potential successor to outgoing police commissioner, Thebeyame Tsimako, who is retiring after 40 years of service.