THERE are reports of confusion at border control police stations following a recent order directing all plainclothes detectives to start wearing police uniforms.
BY NQOBANI NDLOVU
Sources in the police force said communication directing plainclothes detectives at the Border Control and Minerals Unit at border posts and airports to wear police uniforms was received on January 21 from the force’s Central Planning Committee (CPC) headquartered in Harare.
The directive that effectively meant the detectives became ordinary cops overnight reportedly did not go down well with them as they were forced to rush to request uniforms from the Zimbabwe Republic Police’s (ZRP) ordinance stores, sources said.
“It was planned and mooted a year ago by the CPC. We are told that the CPC wants to align itself with their Southern African counterparts who have border based police officers in uniform,” the source said.
A border control police detective who requested anonymity told our sister paper Southern Eye in an interview that: “This directive was not well received and caused a lot of disgruntlement as it was just sudden without a grace period to allow this changeover. It was all frustrating because it meant we ceased to be detectives, but became ordinary police officers within hours.”
Border control police detectives — sources said — only heaved a sigh of relief two days later on January 23 after receiving communication from deputy commissioner general, Innocent Matibiri reversing the earlier directive ‘as he was not aware of the change-over arrangement’.
“There is just confusion. We are confused and happy at the same time that this directive has been reversed,” a detective said.
“But still, we are not in the clear as to what happens next since we have been told to stand ready to start wearing on uniforms.”
ZRP national police spokesperson, Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba professed ignorance over the matter.
But she said “there was nothing peculiar with an order directing the detectives to start wearing on uniforms.”
“There is nothing peculiar because they are still police officers and police officers wear uniforms,” Charamba said.