Interior minister wants to shape up police force
KABUL (PAN): The Minister of Interior Gen. Mujtaba Patang on Tuesday accused Afghan police of working for their respective regions and parties, while he was struggling to shape them into a vibrant national force.
“These policemen were left to me by the former ministers,” he told the genera
l session of Senate or Upper House of Parliament, while outlining his plans to the lawmakers on how to manage the country’s security.
“When policemen commit a crime in a province, they are not arrested or released after being arrested, so it shows they are working for their parties and regions,” he said, adding that he had prepared a strategic plan for the force.
“The number of policemen had reached 157,000, but it would take time to instill national spirit,” he said and as part of his reforms policemen from one province would be transferred to another to ensure they work loyally for the country.
Patang’s another reform would be to establish new departments of civil police next year to promote good relations between the public and police. Besides, male and female policemen, spiritual leaders and tribal elders would also be hired in these departments so people could have easy access to the police without any fear.
Policemen would be equipped with only batons, handcuffs and pistol, instead of carrying Kalashnikovs, rockets or other heavy weapons. Like in other countries, they would be in charge of law enforcement, he said.
“Targetted areas for security transition should be carefully studied, it should not be limited to downing flag of foreigners and hoisting Afghan flags,” said the minister.
In response to a query from Senator Mohammad Amin Safi, he said it was possible for some neighbouring countries to seize Afghan territory, so they have established a joint commission comprising border police, the ministry of borders and tribal affairs to probe the matter.
He acknowledged the presence of corrupt policemen and they have launched anti-corruption campaign since his appointment two months ago, and about 18 policemen had been referred to the prosecution department.
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