Police fires 50 officers over graft

At least 48 police officers have been fired from Rwanda National Police over corruption related crimes since last year. In the same period, 126 police personnel have been charged with corruption, the Inspector General of Police, Emmanuel Gasana has disclosed.
IGP Gasana, flanked by  the deputy IGP in charge of Operations, Dan Munyuza (L) , addressing journalists in Kigali yesterday. The New Times/ Timothy Kisambira.
IGP Gasana, flanked by the deputy IGP in charge of Operations, Dan Munyuza (L) , addressing journalists in Kigali yesterday. The New Times/ Timothy Kisambira.

At least 48 police officers have been fired from Rwanda National Police over corruption related crimes since last year. In the same period, 126 police personnel have been charged with corruption, the Inspector General of Police, Emmanuel Gasana has disclosed.

Forty nine of the 126 committed the crimes in 2013 while the rest committed the offences in 2012.

According to police, the expelled group was found guilty of petty corruption related offences and sentenced to imprisonment of less than six months which they served before being dismissed.

Gasana made the announcement yesterday during a news conference about the status of crimes in the country in the past six month.

Several other police officers, according to Gasana, are still being investigated.

“It should be clearly understood, corruption is not institutionalised (in police). These are a few characters in a force of over 10,000 men and women. However, we have tough punishments against corruption and we have established an anti-corruption unit within the police structure which will be handling all these cases,” said Gasana.

Transparent International has ranked the Rwanda National Police as one of the most corrupt institutions in a country recently ranked as the least corrupt African nation.

Decrease in crime

Meanwhile, according to police statistics, crime incidents decreased by 12.96 per cent between January and June, this year, compared to the same period in 2012.

Gasana pointed out that major crimes include illicit drug dealing, murder, human trafficking, rape, domestic violence, cyber crimes and bank robberies.

“Human trafficking is still a complex crime but figures indicate that it has gone down by 25 per cent due to public awareness campaigns that we have been conducting. We still have cases in the region including that of six Rwandans who were recently arrested in Uganda and another group of eight that we are investigating,” said Gasana without releasing details of the involved rackets.

Murder crimes have also gone down by 19 per cent in the past six month (from 230 cases in the last half of 2012 to 188 in the first half of 2013)

Road accidents, according to police statistics, are still common although there has been a decline of 13 per cent (from 5081 accidents in 2012 to 4417 in 2013).

About 33 per cent of the accidents were attributed to negligence followed by speeding. 

Last year, the police arrested 76 suspects in connection with theft of Rwf1.2 billion from 12 banks.

Gasana also said that fire outbreaks is still a challenge and that in the past six months, there were 30 incidents of fire outbreaks across the country.

“These fires are caused by either poor wiring in some old structures, recklessness by some individuals or illegal practices,” Gasana said.

During the news briefing, the police also paraded eight people who are accused of posing as policemen to solicit money from people claiming that they would give them driving licenses and Vehicle Inspection Certificates.

Among the suspected impostors are public servants, businessmen and a banker, whose names were withheld pending more investigations.

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