THE Eastern Africa Police Chiefs Cooperation Organization (EAPCCO) and the Southern African Regional Police Chiefs Co-operation Organization (SARPCCO) are joining forces to fight cross border and regional crimes.
In a joint press conference held in Dar es Salaam, the heads of SARPCCO, EAPCCO and Interpol Regional Bureau underscored the importance of working together in fighting crimes that include terrorism, drug and human trafficking, cyber crimes, cross border and transnational crimes.
The EAPCCO Chairman Lt General and Inspector General of Ugandan Police, Mr Kale Kayihura, noted that the eastern and southern Africa regions and the world in general are facing high levels of criminal activities including terror attacks, cyber crimes, human and drug trafficking, which need concerted efforts to address.
Mr Kayihura appreciated the support Uganda received from Tanzania in apprehending suspects of the 2010 Kampala terror attack where football fans were killed while watching world cup finals. "We are looking to minimize chances and making it difficult for people to commit crimes in one country and go hide in another to escape justice," he explained.
The SARPCCO Chairman, who is also the Inspector General of Police (IGP) in Tanzania, Mr Said Mwema, said police work of combating crime, cannot be fully achieved without cooperation from other quarters. "Without joining forces with other regional blocs, criminal activities will continue to flourish and will cross borders.
However, this also means societies should work hand in hand with the police in apprehending criminals," he said. Mwema said the EAPCCO Chairman is in the country to follow up on the implementation of resolutions reached in their past meetings, chart ways to fight against trans-border crimes and other challenges facing police officers regionally.
Mr Mwema noted that Tanzania decided to include the resolutions in the strategic plan to improve the police force in the country. EAPCCO membership include; Burundi, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Kenya, Rwanda, Seychelles, Somalia, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda and South Sudan, while SARPCCO is made up of 13 countries which are Angola, Botswana, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Meanwhile, investigations into the theft of 150m/- from Artan Company in Kariakoo, Dar es Salaam are still going on, IGP Mwema has said. Responding to questions from journalists yesterday, Mr Mwema said when the time comes, those tasked with leading investigations into various cases will give reports to the press.
This includes the arrest of two police officers in Mara Region for allegedly possessing 17 pieces of elephant tusks. Five police officers are being held in connection with theft of 150m/- that disappeared during the Kariakoo robbery.
The Dar es Salaam Special Zone Police Commander, Suleiman Kova, was quoted by the media saying the five policemen were being held for questioning in connection with the theft. Investigations into the theft were going on, to put to task those involved in the incident.
During the incident two people, including a cashier of Artan Company were killed. Mr Mwema was also quoted remarking that no stone will be left unturned until all untrustworthy police officers were sacked from the force.
Last week, police officers stationed at Mugumu in Serengeti District, Mara Region, in collaboration with officers from Tanapa, arrested two policemen who were in possession of 17 pieces of elephant tusks. The two policemen were identified as F.5553 PC Gerald Tuti and E.9172 Corporal David Delina from Kagera.