By REBECCA MUSHOTA -
THE Luapula Police command and headmen of Kalasa Lukangaba and Chimese areas of Mansa have pledged to co-operate in the fight against Gender Based Violence (GBV).
Luapula Province Commissioner of Police, Malcolm Mulenga said in an interview yesterday that the police command held an awareness meeting with 40 headmen to tackle issues regarding the security in the two areas.
Mr Mulenga said the meeting was held on Monday and was attended by the Luapula Community Policing Committee headed by himself and the headmen of Kalasa Lukangaba in Maitenke area and Chimese in Senama area of Mansa.
He said police appealed to the headmen to report all GBV and child abuse cases in time so as to preserve evidence.
“They were also cautioned to screen people who joined as Community Crime Prevention Unit members (CCPU) and they were told that they have powers to recommend their dismissal once found wanting,” he said.
Mr Mulenga said the headmen despite appreciating the CCPU, said they were disappointed with the attitude of some police officers saying they had on several occasions received bad response from police.
He said the headmen said closing bars late and selling illicit beer commonly known as Kachasu and marijuana smoking were a source of criminal activities including GBV.
Mr Mulenga said he was happy that the headmen pledged to work with police if there was a change of attitude by police officers.
He he assured the headmen of a positive response from the police and that he had already taken action against police officers with a bad attitude.
Mr Mulenga said a sergeant at Nchelenge Police Station was on Monday detained and charged for assault after he assaulted a suspect facing a charge of theft.
He said even if it was the responsibility of police to fight crime, there was need to incorporate traditional and indigenous ways of responding to various security needs.
“Involving chiefs, sub-chiefs and village headmen in crime prevention and law maintenance was crucial,” he said.