Rwanda National Police (RNP) has reaffirmed its stand on any officer implicated in graft malpractices noting that it’s an “intolerable malpractice” that undermines the core values of the force and against national policies.
RNP spokesperson, Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Theos Badege said that transparency, accountability, protecting the rule of law, and integrity, among other core values defines the professional conduct of each police officer while serving the people with openness, effectively and efficiently.
“The rhythm against corruption and bribery, either with in the force or in other institutions, remains. The slogan is the same…no mercy for corrupt officer; it’s automatic dismissal from the force,” ACP Badege said.
The police comments came a day after a cabinet meeting chaired by President Paul Kagame on Friday, dismissed at least 198 police officers in different ranks, over varied misconduct grounds.
Those dismissed include one superintendent, four on the rank of Chief Inspector of Police (CIP); 23 on the rank of Inspector of Police (IP), and 38 Assistant Inspector of Police (AIP).
Others are 65 Non-Commissioned Officers and 67 Police Constables.
“There are various grounds to which an officer can be dismissed; going against the usual discipline that is required of each officers and offences that are criminal in nature. The dismissed officers, therefore, fall under these categories,” said ACP Badege.
“Most of them, however, are those that were implicated in corruption in form of soliciting bribes, an act that leads to automatic dismissal,” he added.
“There is a process from the RNP disciplinary actions, to the line ministry and ultimately to the cabinet, before an implicated officer is dismissed. The process is meant to look and exhaust each case to ensure that the implicated officer really committed the offence,” he said.
The dismissal, he noted, doesn’t exonerate one from legal actions.
“Policing in Rwanda is proactive in nature, with the public our major allies; such actions against undisciplined officers continues to cement this partnership and trust among the people.”
The fourth edition of Rwanda Governance Scorecard (RGS) indicates that safety and security were the best performers, last year with 92.62 percent, followed by Control of Corruption, to which Rwanda National Police is the lead player against graft.
According to RNP statistics, last year alone, close to 200 people were also arrested for allegedly giving bribes to police officers, and 80 police officers implicated in graft related malpractices.
About Rwf6.6billion of evaded taxes were also recovered while over 100 people have been arrested in connection with misappropriation of about Rwf4.3 billion that were unaccountable for in social protection programmes.
“It is a national policy of ensure zero tolerance to graft. It also falls under the President’s visionary guidance of having few professional officers, who can deliver.”