The National - News

‘Smile for the people, leave tough stuff for criminals’

Lt Gen Dhahi Khalfan tells event the image of police from when he joined is long gone


Dubai’s most senior security official has urged police to ensure they are the friendly, smiling face of law enforcemen­t at all times – and keep their tough side for hardened criminals.

Lt Gen Dhahi Khalfan Tamim, Deputy Chairman of Dubai Police and head of General Security, gave the speech to officers and officials as he reflected on how much law enforcemen­t has changed over the years.

Lt Gen Khalfan was addressing an event on human rights and policing organised by the Ministry of Interior.

“Police units could be a blessing or a curse,” he said of the Arab region. “Those countries that use police to twist the arms of its citizens will fail.

“This country’s police officers perform their duties for community members. Our ethos is to use police’s strength over criminals, not the community.”

Lt Gen Khalfan said the image of police has changed over the decades, from tough law enforcers to the image they have today – guiding tourists, driving supercars and policing the streets.

“I remember back in the day when I wanted to join Dubai Police, my father told me that community looks ‘differentl­y’ at the force,” he said.

“I told him that our duty is to change that stereotype and to contribute in making the force closer to the community, and known for serving the public.

“Everyone has the right to security. [A survey showed] 98 per cent of UAE residents feel safe.

“We plan to work harder to achieve the highest levels of security, reaching up to 100 per cent.

“Our country has been named among the happiest countries. All the police forces in the UAE perform as one team, especially when it comes to humanitari­an causes.”

The event was also given an insight into how prison inmates – include some serving life sentences – can be worked with to benefit the community and themselves.

For those who do not face deportatio­n at the end of their sentences such as UAE nationals, there is a need to reform prisoners and teach them new skills, said Brig Ali Al Shamali, director of the General Department of Correction­al Institutio­ns.

“We help inmates who learn any job during their prison time by providing them with an amount of money to start a small project when they are released,” Brig Al Shamali said.

Mohammed Al Majid, the owner of a manufactur­ing company, said that inmates had helped to build hundreds of offroad vehicles.

“A total of 500 vehicles have been built recently,” Mr Al Majid said. “We co-operated with punitive and correction­al department and organised around five workshops for inmates to learn about building vehicles.

“Dozens of inmates have helped in building quad bikes.”

 ?? Satish Kumar for The National ?? Lt Gen Dhahi Khalfan Tamim, Deputy Chairman of Police and General Security in Dubai, at the Hemaya forum last week
Satish Kumar for The National Lt Gen Dhahi Khalfan Tamim, Deputy Chairman of Police and General Security in Dubai, at the Hemaya forum last week

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