Currently a lot of controversy is gripping the country surrounding the issue of corruption. Most people are worried about how citizens have to fork out money for services to be delivered by the police force. As the country grapples the issue of teacher’s incentives another one arises, police officers want to be paid to render national duties during the constitution making process that is in the hands of COPAC. Zimbabweans have gotten too used to receiving bribes and payment even at inappropriate times. This has become so common that we have forgotten how wrong it is.
One moment the government is preaching about how corruption should be done away with as it cripples our societies but the next minute the police are requesting to be paid for them to perform as expected. What happened to having a passion for your job? Now people just have a passion for the money and will do whatever job to get the money. Teachers will teach in class and take students for extra lessons in their own homes, police officers mount roadblocks when they feel like making an extra buck, nurses will attend to patients that will pay the nurses to get them a drip. What has this world come to? Should those who run mortuaries kill us to maximize profits?
If the government pays the police for the work they are expected to do during the constitution making process then taxpayers should not pay tax. If citizens can refuse for police to be paid the absurd the $2.9 million then we should all stand up and refuse for teachers to be paid incentives. Police should not get paid for this because it is their sole responsibility. Therefore, the government should see to it that teachers receive adequate salaries and not carry begging baskets to parents and guardians. By paying this money to the police and continuing to offer teachers incentives we are legitimizing bribes and corruption.
Such malpractices encourage a situation where each and every other group of civil servants will stand up and ask to be paid an extra lump sum so as to perform diligently. At times of crises different groups will stand up and request payment unnecessarily. Police are not private body guards but a force that should protect the public at all costs.
The police are law enforcers and should not, in any case, take advantage of their uniforms or positions of power to manipulate the public. Lest we forget, the people are watching and they will speak out. Not hearing the people when they speak does not mean they are silent but could mean that you are turning a deaf ear.
The constitution making process is a national procedure where security lies solemnly in the hands of the police force. They are not a private entity that should be paid as per duty rendered. If the ZRP cannot serve Zimbabweans then their efforts are misdirected.
As a way of protesting, the police have reduced the number of officers deployed to work with COPAC. This is a clear indicator of where their interests lie…where the money is. Zimbabweans should not be deceived to think that these very officials will stand up some day and say they proudly serve the nation because we have seen what their definition of national interest is.