Remembering the fallen

Yesterday the Fiji Police Force remembered 13 of its officers who lost their lives in the line of duty since September last year.

A special remembrance day and thanksgiving service was held in Nasinu for the fallen officers which included families and friends.

And as Police Commissioner Ben Groenewald said, the Last Post was sounded for their fallen comrades for they had done a good day’s job.

Yesterday was about commemorating their good lives and their sacrifice, he said.

They fought the good fight, he said, and they finished the race, and kept the faith and ethos of the force.

For what it is worth, yesterday was also about acknowledging the contribution of families and friends. It was about also acknowledging the support base of the force.

As we continue to take positive steps forward in the wake of our first national election since 2006, the commissioner, now more than ever, needs the support of his officers and of the public.

It is with this show of support that a strong and vibrant force can take shape.

Brimming with suspicion, a sense of insecurity and doubt at one stage, the force needs a solid foundation to build from.

As we have said before, sceptics will insist it is a foregone conclusion that officers must do their best for the force.

And those who don’t, or fail to adhere to the rules and regulations that bind an officer of the law must make way for men and women who can.

The men and women of the Fiji Police Force shoulder a responsibility that far outweighs any expectation they may have come in with.

They are reflections of society.

They carry with them the aspirations and hopes of people who believe there is a place for law and order.

Police officers are like beacons of hope.

They ensure there is a balance in society and in our lives.

Obviously it isn’t easy to produce officers who will go on to serve as strong advocates of peace, harmony and stability.

It is fair to expect that there will be constant obstacles that will cloud their judgment, tempt them to abuse their powers, and subsequently go against everything they have been taught at the training academy at Draiba in Suva.

But there are many officers who will stand up against these phases in their career.

These are our special breed of men and women who will stand up for the long arm of the law.

Yesterday was a very special day for many reasons.