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Community Policing or Policing the Community? The Emerging Police Practice in Ethiopia

Journal: International Journal of Science and Research (IJSR) (Vol.3, No. 9)

Publication Date:

Authors : ;

Page : 1948-1954

Keywords : Community policing; police; community; Bahir Dar; Ethiopia;

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The implementation of community policing, which strives to change the very nature of police practice, is a complex and difficult task in a country with the experience of strong public suspicion and mistrust towards the police apparatus. Materializing the ideas into day to day activities and motivating officers to adopt new instructions and changing their traditional police practice are quite difficult. Moreover, making the communities to engage in partnership with the police is perhaps the most challenging issue to overcome. The main objective of this study is to investigate the practice of community policing in Ethiopia with a particular focus on Bahir Dar town, the capital of Amhara regional state, as a case study. Using qualitative research methods, this article argues that the police department in Bahir Dar has been implementing community policing since 2007 which can be seen from three different levels: individual, community and organizational. At the individual level officers were provided with training to improve their competence in crime prevention and problem solving activities. At the community level the police department has made a great effort to reach out to communities that had long been alienated from the police. At the organizational level, the department has restructured itself in order to embed the philosophy of community policing. However, community policing in Bahir Dar is the practice of a specific and specialized Community Policing Sub-Unit rather than a department wide organizational and operational activity.

Last modified: 2021-06-30 21:07:44