Fri | Jun 5, 2020

Indiscipline breeds indiscipline

Published:Wednesday | November 24, 2010 | 12:00 AM


THE ISSUE between taxi operators and the police is an ongoing battle in Jamaica. Oftentimes the police and taxi operators are seen in alter-cations, as a result of taxi operators breaking the law. With regards to the ongoing rise of police corruption in Jamaica, some police still indulge in the malpractice of bribery, which is unethical. The Jamaica Constabulary Force's (JCF) motto, 'To serve, protect and reassure', is a duty that is not being carried out effectively by these so called 'police officers'.

The police, who are expected to exercise their duties in accordance with the law, are undisciplined themselves. At times, it is seen where the majority of police abuse their power when they approach taxi operators or citizens in general. The police act in such an indecent manner, it only leaves one to wonder who can we look up to in this perilous time. What can we do when our own law enforcers are law breakers themselves? Who can we trust? What is Commissioner of Police Owen Ellington doing to curb this issue?

Heart-wrenching abuse

It is heart-wrenching to witness police abusing taxi operators when all they are doing is trying to make an honest living. Taxi drivers are belittled, abused verbally and even physically by the police. While I must agree that five out of 10 taxi drivers break the law, I believe it is more just to let the law take its course, other than abusing them emotionally and extorting them? Aren't many of these police personnel taxi owners themselves, with unlicensed, uninsured vehicles? What a disgrace! The habit of extorting taxi operators has now become a business to many police personnel placed on front-line traffic duty.

I must agree there are some decent police personnel who uphold their duties but, as the saying goes, 'one bad apple spoils the bunch'.

Police officers at times forget taxi operators are human beings who live and breathe in the same manner that they do, but are police personnel always right? Absolutely not! When a police extorts a taxi operator for committing a traffic offence, it eases the burden off the taxi driver to some extent, but does this speaks to moral values? No, it doesn't! It only increases corruption, and our country is more corrupt than ever. Police personnel's indiscipline is not the answer. Two wrongs don't make a right.

I am, etc.,

Jeneva Gordon