Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Police probe on nightclubs, another opportunity to make money?

Wednesday, August 4, 2010 To say that corruption does not exist in the Sri Lankan police force is to stretch credibility. Of course it exists, at all levels, and it extends up to the patrons in the political sphere.
............................

by Stewart Sloan
( The views expressed are the author's own)

(August 04, Gong Kong, Sri Lanka Guardian) Underage drinking is a problem that should be taken seriously in that it can lead to early age alcoholism and drug use. The experimentation with 'soft' drugs such as marijuana can lead to dependence on the harder addictive narcotics such as cocaine and heroin, all of which are readily available to anyone who wants them and all of which kill.

And so the Sri Lankan police have begun a probe into nightclubs that allow underage drinkers into their establishments. This probe is apparently in response to a series of complaints by unknown persons; quite possibly the parents of such children.

Underage drinking is a problem that should be taken seriously in that it can lead to early age alcoholism and drug use. The experimentation with 'soft' drugs such as marijuana can lead to dependence on the harder addictive narcotics such as cocaine and heroin, all of which are readily available to anyone who wants them and all of which kill.

Of course, not all young people are stupid enough to go down this route, but if one in ten does, then that is one too many.

So the police are to be congratulated for taking the initiative in this probe. The bar and nightclub owners know exactly what they are doing when they sell liquor to an underage person. The responsibility lies firmly with them and hefty fines and prison sentences for repeat offenders will make a difference. However, in order for this to make a difference the legislation on providing liquor to underage drinkers must be enforced. And sadly, in Sri Lanka, enforcement of any law is very much at the discretion of the investigating police officer or his seniors.

To say that corruption does not exist in the Sri Lankan police force is to stretch credibility. Of course it exists, at all levels, and it extends up to the patrons in the political sphere. So if the bar or nightclub owner has a tame politician under his belt it is no great hardship for him to request that the investigating officer look the other way. The politician simply has a word with the officer concerned and the job is done. Almost every day there is an example of this type of thing. The recent arson attack on the Siyatha TV station and radio broadcast facilities of the Voice of Asia Network in the early hours of July 30 is a prime example of the authorities turning a blind eye to a crime.

This attack took place in an area virtually festooned with police checkpoints. It is a well known fact that the officers manning these checkpoints stop almost every vehicle passing through to see if there is any possibility of extorting money from the drivers. Even Sri Lankan judges have deplored this state of affairs. How is it possible that the two vehicles carrying the arsonists and their weapons were not stopped either going to or running from the attack; an attack that occurred within striking distance of Temple Trees, where security is maximised?

So is anything to come of the police probe into underage drinking or will it just be another opportunity for the Sri Lankan police to earn some extra money? The health and lives of young people are at stake here and it is the responsibility of the police to enforce the legislation that controls the sale of liquor to minors. This is a responsibility that cannot be neglected for the opportunity of making money.

Stewart Sloan is the author of three novels and a collection of anecdotes about the Royal Hong Kong Police Force whom he served as a civilian from 1987 to 1997. He works as an editorial assistant for a regional human rights NGO in Hong Kong.

9 comments:

佳陳容 said...

在莫非定律中有項笨蛋定律:「一個組織中的笨蛋,恆大於等於三分之二。」............................................................

文王廷 said...

生命就像騎單車一樣,除非你停止踩踏板,否則不會掉下去。......................................................

冠陳儒 said...

逛BLOG逛上癮了,一天不來會不習慣了耶!!............................................................

惠奇 said...

人生像一杯茶,若一飲而盡,會提早見到杯底..................................................

江趙雲虹趙雲虹仁昆 said...

「仁慈」二個字,就能讓冬天三個月都溫暖。..................................................

王綺廖家堯廖家堯穎 said...

良言一句三冬暖,惡語傷人六月寒。................. ................................................

黃英吳思潔吳思潔邦 said...

人必須心懷希望,才會活的快樂,日子才過得充實,有意義,有朝氣,有信心。......................................... ........................

said...

認清問題就等於已經解決了一半的問題。..................................................

姚义丰 said...

生存乃是不斷地在內心與靈魂交戰;寫作是坐著審判自己。..................................................