Over 20 CID officers resign to join warders
MBABANE – Over 20 officers from the police criminal investigations department are alleged to be in the ranks of the unemployed after they resigned with the intention to join the Correctional Services.
The officers were based in various police stations. The deal, it is alleged fell through when the department of Correctional Services was not given the go ahead for establishing the project due to government’s current cash flow challenges.
According to one of the resigned officers, they were allegedly head hunted to join the Correctional Services, but the deal fell through and they are now suffering. He claimed that upon realising that the deal wouldn’t go through, they returned to withdraw their resignations from the police service, but were not successful.
Adding, he alleged that there were over 100 officers who had resigned from the police service since the beginning of this year, but 22 were CIDs.
This after they were allegedly promised lucrative packages to join the Correctional Services.
"With the promise of a better package and the fact we wouldn’t have gone through the training process as we have already been trained, it didn’t take much to convince one.
"We were informed that the Correctional Services wanted to establish an intelligence department and they needed experienced people. We were identified according to our individual experience," he alleged.
As a result of the resignations, the officer alleged that a memo discouraging officers from resigning was issued. "A colleague I was with at college is now ranked as inspector after joining the Correctional Services adding that sewuphatsa indvuku. When he left the police service, he was only a constable but look at him now," he alleged.
He further expressed disappointment that the deal fell through as they are now suffering and they cannot blame the police service because they were the ones who resigned.
If anything, he said, they blame the Correctional Services for coaxing them to resign without first verifying if the resources would be available.
Police Public Relations Officer Superintendent Wendy Hleta said she was not aware that some people were changing camps. "I have not heard anything to that effect," she said.
Isaiah Ntshangase, Correctional Services Commissioner, confirmed that it’s in their plans to set up an intelligence department, but dismissed reports of them recruiting from the police service. He said they would never recruit from the police service as they were part of the same family.
Ntshangase explained that having the intelligence unit was part of their five year plan, which includes the dog and horse units.
The intelligence unit, according to Ntshangase, would assist in gathering information from within the service adding that the information sourced would be forwarded to the police. "We will not be recruiting from the police because we have our own people. We will only seek assistance from our colleagues because they have experience," said the commissioner.
He added that as of their plans, they are hoping to establish a scuba diving division because some of their facilities were situated near rivers.
He recounted that last year an inmate drowned while escaping at Bhalekane, adding that police divers had to be called.
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