Traffic Chief Ramesh Ashram is urging members of the public to assist police officers who come under attack from disorderly civilians.
He made the appeal during a recent radio programme “The Police and You” hosted by Stan Gouveia, who is the Deputy Director of the Communications Unit of the Guyana Police Force (GPF).
The Traffic Chief was asked to respond to the apparent increase in cases whereby traffic ranks are attacked by civilians whilst they are executing their duties.
A random caller asked whether it would be prudent for traffic officers to now be armed with guns.
In response, Ashram expressed that weapons may not help the situation. Rather, he said assistance from civilians may help to de-escalate the situation.
“I don’t believe weapons will solve the problem. When you look at these incidents on social media, there is a lot of other civilians around and [they] don’t render any assistance to the police. So as members of the public, as citizens, when you see these behaviour towards the police, you should assist the police,” the Traffic Chief said.
He further appealed with persons to cooperate with the police. On the other hand, he said traffic ranks are often reminded not to harass road users over minor offences.
“[For] minor offences, we talk to the police on a daily basis, take the vehicle’s number and we will proceed get the name, address of the owner through GRA [Guyana Revenue Authority], and proceed on that course. My advice to police, if you encounter a situation and you realize that you cannot deal with it…seek other assistance, use your cellphone or radio set call in for assistance.”
The issue of traffic officers being attacked by civilians is nothing new. Some notable cases of recent times are of the bus driver who chased a traffic rank with a cutlass, and the mother who bite a police officer who was attempting to arrest her son.