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Fines from S.O.E. order breaches benefits community

Revenue that the Ministry of Police and Prisons has generated from fines paid for state of emergency (S.O.E.) order breaches will flow back to the community.

That is the assurance from the Police Commissioner, Fuiavaili'ili Egon Keil, when he congratulated the Police for the boost in its revenue collection while confirming that about $45,000 tala which has been collected since March this year and includes fines for S.O.E. order breaches.

“Like revenue, that’s one of the biggest things this Ministry has achieved this year," he said. 

"Our revenue collection has gone off...  but as you know, we’re the ministry. 

"We collect, put it in the bank, treasury deals with the money and they sort it out and the money that we do collect, I make sure that it goes into the hands of the Government so they will arrange this money to pay for the employees, renovate roads and schools, pay for our doctors so our medical is good and the infrastructure of Samoa is solid.”

Fuiavaili'ili emphasised that the generated revenue at the end of the day ends up back in the community. 

“That’s where that money is going [back to the community] and so if a public servant is stealing this money, you’re taking away from the people and all these little things which we’ve allocated this money to, then it’s used to build the lives of our people.”

But revenue collection is not the core business of the Ministry, the Commissioner admitted, and is only a small percentage of their work.

“Also cognisant, that’s not our main purpose here. That’s only a little by product of our work, a priority, but a very small portion of our work. Our biggest priority is the safety of Samoa and there’s a lot that falls under there.

“If somebody takes away from that, it’s such a bad thing because you’re taking it away from the people that need money to pay for water and electricity and bring children to school and so forth.”

Looking at the big picture, Fuiavaili'ili reiterated that ultimately the Police provide a service to their customers – who are the people – in order to make Samoa a better place. 

“I want tourists to come to Samoa and say Samoa is clean, hospitals are good and great service. We are customer servers so we always try to do the best service as well but they need the money from these revenue collecting agencies even them to do good things,” he added.

The function of the Police, according to the Commissioner, is on the right track but that doesn’t mean they should rest on their laurels.

“We will never rest on the laws. It’s quality through continuous improvements. Sometimes it’s not about the money but the feeling that you get inside that you won’t get anywhere but here in the Police.

“We fight crime but it's a lot bigger than just fighting crime. It's thinking things through and being a critical thinker.”

Fuiavaili'ili reminded young officers to think rationally, in order to navigate the challenges that they face in their line of work, as policing is not just about using “muscles.”

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