Rwanda National Police arrested nine drivers in separate operations conducted Friday and Saturday, in connection with attempting to bribe police officers.
The suspects attempted to offer bribes after they were caught violating road safety rules, according to Senior Supt. Emmanuel Kabanda, the spokesperson for the department of Traffic and Road Safety.
“When officers tried to penalise the drivers for violating road traffic rules and regulations, the drivers attempted to offer them bribes. They were immediately taken into custody for attempting to bribe officers,” Senior Supt. Kabanda said.
Five were arrested in the City of Kigali while four others were arrested on various highways, he said.
The bribes ranged between Rwf2, 000 and Rwf10, 000, he added.
“Bribery is a criminal behaviour that we continue to see, especially among drivers caught violating road safety rules and regulation, but it’s also a malpractice that Rwanda National Police responds to with due attention to enforce the zero-tolerance stance to corruption,” Kabanda said.
At least 151 people, who include drivers and those seeking road traffic related services, were arrested last year over attempted bribery, according to Police statistics. More than 200 were arrested in 2016.
“Some of them had no driver’s license, no transport authorisation permit, motor vehicle mechanical inspection certificate, while others had overloaded,” Kabanda added.
The suspects’ automobiles were also impounded.
“Let it be clear in the minds of everyone, especially motorists that fighting corruption is the duty of every police officer regardless of what they do. Those traffic officers deployed on the roads are there to ensure safety and security, to prevent anything that can cause accident and loss of lives but also to fight and prevent any criminal act, including bribery or corruption,” Kabanda warned.
Police intensified its operations against graft as one of the high impact crimes.
The RNP Department of Inspectorate of Services and Ethics is at the helm of the operations and imparting ethical standards against corruption within the Force.