Takitumu voluntary constables powerless

Friday September 06, 2019 Written by Published in Local
Takitumu’s Voluntary Police Constables Tai Nicholas, Sonny Williams, Ali Macquarie, and Alfred Rere. 19011423 Takitumu’s Voluntary Police Constables Tai Nicholas, Sonny Williams, Ali Macquarie, and Alfred Rere. 19011423

The warrants of Takitumu Vaka voluntary police constables have not been renewed.

 

They expired on May 24. Since then, the officers Tai Nicholas, Sonny Williams, Alistair Macquarie and Alfred Rere have not had authority to do drink-drive tests and make citizens’ arrests.

All they can do is drive around the district to make their presence felt.

The Cook Islands Road Safety Council has written to the Police Commissioner, asking for a meeting to express their concerns about the failure to renew the men’s warrants.

“Despite numerous requests by letter prior to expiry and texts to Police, there has been no response,” wrote council member Brian Baudinet.

Democratic Party Titikaveka MP Sel Napa says there is growing concern and disappointment over the failure to renew the warrants.

“They have done a great job helping regular Police in our area,” she said. “Without those warrants these four volunteers, all from Takitumu, can’t assist with the road blocks, maintaining law and order in our district or even make an arrest if needed.

“It’s a real shame that something so positive and good for our community has just come to an end because Police can’t seem to make a decision on renewing warrants.”

Napa said the Takitumu community backed the appointment of the volunteers and she had made requests to Police to attend to what she hopes is just a prolonged oversight.

“Perhaps Police have decided without consulting with our community that there is no need for volunteers Police officers to work in our area,” she said. “I disagree and so do a lot of people who live in Takitumu. Please don’t make any decisions about our community without talking to us first.”

Since November, the volunteers have been active setting checkpoints at each end of the district to monitor who is going in and out of the village. They have dealt with 1300 cases involving drink drivers, people driving without registrations, licenses, no helmets and even people who have been marked by police. 

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