THE Fiji Police Force is trying to instil a sense of national consciousness where people take ownership of their safety and know that they have an important role to play in fighting crime.
The force is exploring avenues of strengthening its community policing partnership with the focus on members of the community playing a more active role, says Commissioner of Police Brigadier-General Ioane Naivalurua.
Brig-Gen Naivalurua said the force realised that it had a lot to do to achieve the desired results expected of them by government and the people of Fiji.
Following recent criticism against the services and work of police officers, the head of the force said he welcomed the comments as it helped the force gauge itself in terms of performance.
"We always accept comments or criticism made against us and we try and improve because at the end of the day we believe that the people are the best judge of how we're working and if we're doing enough," he said.
Brig-Gen Naivalurua said the organisation welcomed anyone who was willing to assist the force in the fight against crime.
"We stated in our submission to the Constitution Commission of the importance of the partnership role the force has with society acknowledging the fact that without the help and assistance of communities we could not effectively do our job." He emphasised the need for members of the community to take a more proactive role in helping police fight crime.
"We can't do this alone, police are the community and the community are the police."
"Once they realise that they can also be law enforcers in an indirect way where they report crimes and give helpful information that could help curb crime in their area, then we should be able to achieve our goal of crime free societies."
Brig-Gen Naivalurua said while there were shortfalls with some of the third quarter key performance indicators, he gave his assurance that the crime situation was manageable and controllable.