President Paul Kagame has commended Rwanda National Police’s performance in its last 17 years of existence, and challenged the force to perform to the best of its ability and ensure that the trust and confidence Rwandans have in them is sustained.
The Head of State made the remarks, yesterday, while presiding over the ‘Police Day’ to mark the 17th anniversary of RNP, held at Kigali Regional Stadium.
In his strategic guidance, President Kagame said that for the police to sustain and further achieve public trust, confidence, professionalism, self-respect and discipline, they should always be define their values, which ultimately contribute to the country’s transformation process.
“Rwandans should have trust, confidence and be part of their police,” the Head of State said.
He added that Police can never deliver on its mandate if it operates in isolation.
“Policing is made easier when there is partnership. Communities have to be involved, and indeed they have done so,” President Kagame said as he addressed a cheerful fully-parked stadium.
The colourful ceremony attracted about 10, 000 RNP partners in policing drawn from across the country, including members of Community Policing Committees, Rwanda Youth Volunteers in Community policing, Anti-crime clubs from schools, commercial motorcyclists associations, Anti-crime Ambassadors mainly composed of local artistes, and members of District Administrative Security Support Organ (DASSO), among others.
The Head of State recognized that 17 years is such a short time for any new institution but a lot has been achieved by the young force.
“I commend you and wish you a happy 17th anniversary. I thank all Rwandans, who partnered with Police in ensuring rule of law and achieving the police mandate of ensuring a safety and crime prevention.”
“Security is the foundation of the progress we have achieved to date and the welfare of our citizens…We know our past, our current and the future we want. Let us work together to uphold security in our nation, the region and our continent.”
363 Officer Cadets commissioned
Earlier on, the Minister of Justice and Attorney General, Johnston Busingye commissioned 363 Officer Cadets including 33 females of the ninth intake, who completed a 10-month Cadet Course, and conferred upon the rank of Assistant Inspector of Police (AIP).
The graduands also include 20 from Rwanda Correctional Services (RCS).
In his address, President Kagame congratulated the newly commissioned junior officers and challenged them that the pass-out is not an end itself but the beginning to put effective use the skills and knowledge they acquired for the good of Rwandans.
“Optimize the knowledge you acquired during your training to execute your duties with distinction,” President Kagame advised the officers.
RNP is currently undergoing reform which the President said that they are in line with the desire to make law enforcement more efficient and to serve the people better.
Police Day was preceded by a month-long countrywide series of community development activities conducted under the context of ‘Police Week’.
According to Minister Busingye, during this period, Police distributed solar home systems to over 3400 households and 20 health centers across the country.
“Police also linked about 600 homes to clean tap water, 700 people given universal medical insurance, and constructed or renovated over 60km of feeder roads,” said the Minister.
Among other activities that marked the Police Week included the construction of 150 toilets and 30 kitchens, construction of two football pitches in Gasabo and Rutsiro, building and renovation of nine bridges and water channels, fighting armyworms on 46 hectares of plantations and held several anti-crime campaigns.
With regards to what the force has achieved in the last 17 years, Minister Busingye said: “Rwanda is today among the safest countries in the world, communities are taking part in crime prevention and Rwandans are enjoying all their freedoms.”
In line with the commissioning of the Cadet Officers, the Commandant of Police Training School (PTS), Commissioner of Police (CP) Vianney Nshimiyimana said that the officers covered both theoretical knowledge and practical skills including drills and duties, skill at arms, physical fitness and paramilitary training.
Other include police operations and techniques, leadership, command and management, peacekeeping, law, road safety, community policing, gender and human rights, among others.
“Considering the package they received and professional values instilled in them, there is no doubt that they will contribute a lot in making sure that people in Rwanda are safe, involved and reassured,” CP Nshimiyimana said.
The coincided events were also attended by other senior government officials, local leaders and family members of the commissioned officers.
The renowned youngsters – Imitavu – of Kirehe brought the fully-parked stadium to their knees with their art in poem, reciting Rwanda’s journey in security and development under the visionary leadership.