Patrick Chitumba, Midlands Bureau Chief
THE ongoing head count in the police force is crucial to determine the exact number of police officers in the country, the Deputy Minister of Home Affairs, Obedingwa Mguni, has said.
The Deputy Minister told The Chronicle that even in Parliament, MPs had raised questions on the exact number of police officers in the country.
“The head count started in earnest in Bulawayo province over the weekend and in the next two days they’re coming here to the Midlands province.
“We’ve to go through all the provinces to answer to the concerns of the citizens of Zimbabwe on the correct ratio between the police and the public,” he said.
“The number of officers in the service has been a question that has been asked even in Parliament as well. So we’ve taken the initiative to count the number of officers we’ve to get a correct figure for planning purposes.”
The Deputy Minister said while the international policing ratio was one police officer to 300 people, in Zimbabwe, in some places, the ratio was 1:830.
Mguni said after the head count, the figures will be used to map the way forward in terms of possible recruitment.
He said the police service has not been recruiting for some time now in line with an instruction issued by the Civil Service Commission.
In Bulawayo province, police officers on Saturday reported for the head count.
They were required to present their current pay slips as proof of being on the government’s pay roll.
Police officers were also supposed to show the period they have served in the service together with their academic certificates.