In a bid to move with the trends of fast development in the City of Kigali, the metropolitan police has strengthened in capabilities and intensified operations to deal with issues of security that are detrimental to doing business and transformation.
In an interview with ACP Celestin Twahirwa, Police spokesperson explained that urbanization, social amenities and inter-connectivity in tourism sector brings along issues related to petty crimes, road safety, organized crimes and other related security challenges.
“The metropolitan police understand this quite well and we have put in place varied measures to detect, prevent and combat such crimes to ensure total security for Kigali residents and maximise conducive environment for doing business,” Twahirwa said.
“Rwanda National Police, therefore, established a special crackdown force to respond rapidly to any incident and created units like crime intelligence, counter-terror, , cybercrime, Financial Investigations unit, Economic crimes, anti-corruption and several others, to support Kigali and beyond in deal with any security issues. This was a deliberate effort to build units capable enough to prevent crime other than dealing with the consequences,” he added.
“In the past, we have had a number of cases related to vehicle and house break-ins but in most cases suspects are arrested and stolen items recovered, especially electronics gadgets, although one of the challenges we face is that the alleged owners of these items can’t even prove that they are the rightful owners… most of them don’t have any proof like receipts or even a mark to which we can base their claims,” said ACP Twahirwa.
He further said that police have also strengthened partnership with city authorities, other security organs, and community policing partners including the public and media, and mapping out more vulnerable areas for target.
Local patrols, static and mobile police rapid response units and toll-free lines, he said, have also been put in place to help in fast information flow.
Rwanda National Police currently has nine separate toll-free lines; 112 (emergency), 111 (Fire and Rescue Brigade), 113 (traffic accidents), 110 (marine), 116 (child help-line), 3512 (Anti-GBV), 3029 (Isange), 997 (anti-corruption) and 3511 (complaint against police officer). All these are meant for easy and response to any eventuality and feedback to police.
“More effort is being put in detection mechanisms, sensitizing the public to work with police through all the available channels, which we believe will help to reduce crime incidents as low as possible.”
“All villages in Kigali have local patrols supported by district authorities, which have a force multiplier effect to usual police patrols.”
“In general, Kigali is safe but even a single case of any kind has its impact; for security to be sustainably maintained, all partners in community policing including the general public are urged to partake in all security and safety initiatives and share timely information on suspicious acts and people.”