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Significant drop in domestic violence cases reported – Police

There was a significant drop in domestic violence cases reported to the Ministry of Police between the 2017-2018 financial years.

The drop was highlighted in a report – which the Police furnished to the Ministry of Finance as part of its full year performance analysis budget monitoring report of Government ministries, constitutional authorities, statutory bodies and state-owned enterprise organisations – whose budgets are monitored by the Ministry.

The report stated that the Police continue to raise awareness on domestic violence through public awareness and social media postings and have signed off on their objective to distribute 60 releases during the reviewed period. 

The Police said it recorded receiving 212 calls that were connected to domestic violence during that period, which was a drop of 32 per cent relative to the previous year. 

In terms of crime a total of 4,760 minor crimes and major crimes were reported and attended to by the Police on Upolu Island, which has surpassed the Ministry’s aggregate target of 3,200 crimes.

The Police in Savai'i have also reported 800 minor and major crimes within the period under review, with the report revealing that the Ministry had over-estimated the number of special operations conducted as this is done on an ad hoc bases. 

“The Ministry is strict on personnel code of conduct and therefore completed 96 investigations of public complaints. There has been a slight increase according to police records of complaints received from the public and internally," the report stated.

“Public safety is Police number one priority as continuous roadblocks and spot check operations are conducted in both Upolu and Savai'i.” 

The monitoring of night clubs and their ability to comply with business statutory requirements is also on the list for the Police to investigate compliance, according to the report.

“Continuous monitoring of night clubs to ensure they comply with liquor and gaming business statutory requirements. The criminal investigation unit performed 19 out of 27 targeted drug raids and had processed the cases for prosecution.”

For on-going criminal activities surveillance, that report revealed that it has surpassed its target of 30 by 93 while a total of 86 search warrants were executed by the Police out of the 145 targeted.

Surveillance of the country’s coast and harbour also falls under the remit of the Police with the now-decommissioned Nafanua vessel undertaking 109 coastal and harbour patrols and responding to five search and rescue operations. 

The report further stated that the Ministry recorded 1,030 firearms licenses exceeding their target of 600 in this financial year.

“In the previous year only one criminal offence involving firearm was reported to the ministry; however, the current year 14 incidents were reported. The Ministry's recruitment process of Police officers is usually conducted once in a financial year and has impacted Personnel spending to fall short of budget by 11 per cent."

“Utilisation under operating stands at 94 per cent for the period under review. The Ministry transferred saving of $1,676,192 from personnel to operating and capital for funding of office supplies, operational maintenance, replacement of written of vehicles and other assets needed.” 

According to the Police, the report aspires to inform all stakeholders on the overall implementation of the full year estimates in the format as presented to Parliament in June of the preceding financial year, against a set of performance measures that accompanied them.

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