The National – Thursday, June 30, 2011
I REFER to the letter by “Paketo Dust” (“Where is the law?”, The National, June 23).
I am equally concerned about all killings in our city.
I have not commented on all the killings in the city but that does not mean I condone or value some life more than others.
I have responded to the killings at Gordon’s Market and at Koki/Badili during the year and publicly condemned them while at the same time, assisted in bringing peace to the communities and the city.
I condemned the killing of the young Koiari leader in April, just before Easter, and played a big role in bringing peace to the Koiari people who had lost a young and potential leader.
I commented on and condemned the recent killing of Wong Tee Tee because of the way he was killed.
It is not part of our culture and we must never allow it to take root in our country.
That is why I specifically condemned the killing apart from representing the city residents in expressing our disgust with one more death.
In my job and from where I am, I cannot directly take action to stop these killings and have the perpetrators brought to justice.
That is the job of the police.
What I can do is to create the social and economic climate where peace can prevail and security – physical, social and economic – can increase.
I believe my record speaks for itself.
In the last three years, with the different social, economic and physical interventions that we have put in place, we have reduced opportunist crime, for example, by almost half.
We are now even deploying safety wardens at bus stops, something which should be done by the police or the National Road Safety Council.
Most crime now, including killings, are organised crime and they are hard to detect and prevent.
They need good intelligence and investigation to make arrest and prosecute. This is primarily the task of the police.
We are supporting the police in the city in form of transportation and funding so they can do their job.
When there were jail breakouts in the city in 2009 and last year, we provided funding to the police which resulted is the recapture of some of the escapees.
We are now supporting the police to deal with increased car jacking but the public must remember that police is a responsibility of the national government although we play a complementary and supporting role.
We will continue to do that.
At the end of the day, safety and security in the city depends on our own attitude and respect for one another.
The fact that there is low rate of killing in the streets and communities in Australia is not because they have many police officers but because they have a value system that is based on respect for life, property and each other.
Think about this, Paketo Dust.
Ask yourself and your tribesman and women: Are you doing your part to bring peace and security to our city and nation?