Saturday, June 23, 2007

Who Polices the Police?

I want to know who one complains to when one sees a policeman either breaking a law, or behaving in an unprofessional manner? Although I am quite used to having cars drive toward me the wrong way on a one way street, I was startled to have a motorcycle policeman do it to me the other day. Had he had his siren on I might have understood it, but it wasn’t on and he didn’t appear to be chasing anyone, he was just taking a shortcut!

And at the crossroads of the Haya Center in Shemisani I watched a policeman directing traffic with one hand while smoking a cigarette with the other! Aren’t there regulations concerning smoking while on duty….especially while directing traffic?

If the Police aren’t setting examples in their behavior to the public, then who is? Or are there a set of laws that apply to them and another set for us??


Blogger Mohanned said...

You call the Military Police I think..

Saturday, June 23, 2007  
Blogger publicfacing said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Sunday, June 24, 2007  
Blogger publicfacing said...

Your willingness to challenge this through official channels is admirable.

I, however, think your best tool for combating such occurrences is this blog, directly through readers and indirectly by disseminating the word throughout the Jordan Blogoshphere. Why? It can kick off conversation and the matter can spread, something that happens especially quickly through an Arab society.

It would seem that a matter such as this would be a Ministerial pass-the-buck: "we don't deal with that, that's THEIR job!" On the side of optimism though, how would you identify those officers specifically? And plus, since all police officers take such advantages of their positions, there's no real chance on police policing one another as far as decency and rules go.

This is, I feel, something that we must suffer through--opacity at the highest levels seeps down through to the lowliest. Perhaps nothing short of a well-backed, well-funded campaign throughout Jordan pushing for monumental shift in policing, such as cameras in cars, an Independent Complaint Commissions, etc--and even if the campaign were successful, the Government would be extremely reluctant to pay, if indeed it even could.

For one, I think these little indiscretions are acceptable in the grand scheme of things--just look at other poor, and even rich countries around the world, where police can and do operate as a Government-funded mafias; beating, kick-backs, etc.

I'm far more pro for a ban on smoking in such places as doctors waiting rooms than anywhere else.

And may I add to this, I personally have received what I deem to be unfair treatment by the police. I was doing a U-turn on the Gardens, and as I was going round, the light turned yellow. Stopping would have had to have been abrupt and would've been quite dangerous, that; but that however mattered little to the police officer who saw it just and fair to slap me with a 50-dinar fine. He did not see it fit to stop the Jordanian registered and driven car behind me.

I take this as somewhat of an annoyance, and truly do believe that their is goodness in the police force in favour of the people, to serve and protect us. And that such things as smoking on the job and taking wrong roads--and when fine-able offences are filmed and fine collection computerized--will all become commonplace in years to come, when Jordan becomes yet more modernised and truly on the edge of all the benefits the 21st century has to offer.

"Who watches the watchmen" is an old saying, but a contemporary problem.

An interesting point you raised. This is definitely of the top-tier of blogs in/about Jordan.


Sunday, June 24, 2007  
Blogger IRC President said...

The military police is connected to military forces, I guess there is a section in the normal police, like in the Ministry of Interior, which supervises policemen. This is the "legal" system in Egypt, not saying what is going on of course :D. I don't know if it is like Jordan or not.

Sunday, June 24, 2007  
Blogger nasimjo© said...

its really ironic how people of this country do not really know the authorities hierarchy in their country!

anyway, answering your questions, there is something called "The Police discipline Dept".
Those are somehow a part of the military police, they wear the same as normal police, except that they have red hats instead of navy blue ones, and their police cars have a rid stripe instead of a blue one.

Sunday, June 24, 2007  
Blogger nasimjo© said...

also, a division of this police discipline division is available in the police dept's administration for accepting people's notes and cases about any abuse or low breaking a police man has done.

Sunday, June 24, 2007  
Anonymous Emily said...

Two weeks ago in Sweifeyah, two cops were randomly stopping taxis. One cop was drinking a Coke and when he was finished, he threw the can on the parking lot ground!!! I wanted to ask him to do it again, so that I could get it on video b/c I knew that my friends here in the US would never believe me that a cop would do that, given he was in public and in front of about 15 people.

Sunday, June 24, 2007  

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