For the longest time I have had a beef with the police force. I’ve never agreed with the way they used to set up ad hoc roadblocks just to book motorists for minor traffic offences.
My contention has been that they should look at the bigger picture and help the public rather than inconvenience them by causing traffic congestion with the roadblocks.
In the past five weeks since the imposition of the Movement Control Order (MCO) on March 18, my perception has changed somewhat. I realise that my discontentment is but a minor issue which still needs to be addressed but in no way does it reflect what the police force is really all about.
Our men in blue deserve the highest plaudits for the way they have taken to the task entrusted upon them during the MCO.
In the early days of the MCO, they showed utmost restraint and patience with Joe Public who still wanted to go out for every little reason from buying beverage to get a good night’s sleep to taking their pet for a ride, and more.
Videos abound of how they interacted with the people and explained nicely why they needed to follow the rules and stay at home.
Even later on when it was decided that more stern action was needed as many were still intent on breaking the law for one reason or other, the police maintained their humane approach despite taking a firmer stance.
Then there have been touching moments where they rescued and fed stray cats and dogs, helped the elderly by just holding their hands and carrying out other deeds beyond the call of duty.
Let’s not forget the health risk they face every day as they are not only exposed to the weather elements but also Covid-19 carriers. Two weeks ago, it was reported that 66 police officers had tested positive and 1,255 close contacts quarantined. One police officer died. Those figures could be higher now.
And then, not everyone is appreciative of these sacrifices. The police have also been abused by some disgruntled motorists who were stopped at roadblocks. Fortunately, there are very few of such people.
It is undeniable there is dissatisfaction over double standards when it comes to action against VIPs, and can affect the credibility of the force, thus they need to do something positive about this issue.
That said, the humanity that the police force has brought forth in recent weeks is touching and praise-worthy – something which they have not been fondly known for in the past.
I am glad they have proven me and many others wrong.
To our fine police officers, we at Twentytwo13 salute you!