“The best way to address negativity is by maintaining professionalism”

This was the message relayed to by the Minister for Defense, National Security and Foreign Affairs the Honourable Inia Seruiratu to the Divisional Police Commander East (DPC/East) Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Bereta Naisau and her Eastern Division Command Group during his tour of the Division.

While addressing the senior officers, the Minister said their roles as leaders was important in developing and inculcating a culture of service.

“Customer service is practiced well in the private sector, but is still a challenge for us and that is where capacity development is important”.

“We can have all the numbers, all the money, technology and resources, but if we have the wrong people we can’t achieve our tasks and that is why we need to invest in our people, and I assure you that this is also being discussed and looked at by your senior command at Headquarters”.

The Minister said Government recognized the work put in by members of the institution in maintaining national security, but more needed to be done.

“You must keep up with the changes taking place within your area of operation so that you are proactive rather than reactive”.

“I understand that you cannot fully get away from being reactive once crimes are committed, but you have to align your strategies according to the evolving crime trends, because development comes with a price, and its innocent people who pay the price when they become victims of crime”.

Sharing some fatherly advice, the Minister said he understood how challenging work can be when dealing with public criticism and negativity.

“I had the opportunity to speak to the Flying Fijians team before their game against Georgia because all the negativity that followed them after their loss to Uruguay had a major impact on them personally as the attacks were not only against them but against their families”.

“I told them that they needed to rise above the negativity and play their hearts out because while they may be criticized and loathed for their loss, their efforts were still needed in completing Fiji’s World Cup campaign, which is similar to policing, in that while the institution is often criticized, Fijians still need your officers to conduct their work in keeping them safe, so the best way to rise above the negativity is to maintain professionalism at all times”.

The Minister is expected to visit the newly established Central Police District which was formerly under the Command of the Divisional Police Commander South soon.

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