By: Thoboloko Ntšonyane

MASERU- As the 2023 year is about to be wind up, it is during this busy season high volume of incoming travelers and inter-district travelling takes place. It is during this time where also criminals take advantage and criminal cases increase.

The Lesotho Mounted Police Service (LMPS) has promised an enhanced police visibility during the festive holidays in order to ensure compliance with the laws.

The law enforcement officers promised that they will be out on the streets and roads in full force to also ensure safety of the members of the public as well as the property.

This information came into light last Friday during the launch of the festive season policing campaign that is expected to run from December 15 to January 12, 2024.

These festive season policing operations were launched by the Commissioner of Police (COMPOL) Holomo Molibe at the police headquarters and was flanked by the District Commissioners (DISPOLS) from the 10 districts.

Criminals also take advantage of the festivities targeting unsuspecting celebrants. The public is advised to stay vigilant at all times.

Some of the opportunistic crimes happening during this season are burglaries, phones and bags snatching and scams.

The DISPOLS said they are committed to deploy all resources to ensure crime-free holidays during this time of the year leading to a new year. 

All the DISPOLS presented their policing operations for their respective districts during this time.

They pointed out that the crime increases during the holidays. Some of the criminal activities which normally happen during this time they are gender based violence (GBV), murder cases, robberies, Scams, and also trafficking in persons (TIP).

The DISPOLS promised to deploy many police on the ground safe for increased visibility. They said they have heighted awareness efforts on crime preventative measures wherein they work with the youth and the communities.

In every district, DISPOLS said they have assembled a team of officers that will be deployed at the strategic places such as roads, banks, patrolling towns and villages. There is also a team that will maintain law and order during pass-out ceremonies of the initiations as many have and completing the period of rite of passage for boys into manhood.

“This operation will culminate in the hosting of the LMPS excellence awards which will focus on the three crimes that we have earmarked which are murder, armed robbery and stock theft. We want to have the police officers who have distinguished themselves in each police post and in their respective districts,” he said.

It is in this meeting where the COMPOL announced that there will be an awards giving post the holidays to best performed districts during the festive season that will record zero cases or very low cases of murder, armed robbery and stock theft.

Other categories that will be recognized and awarded are; best police officer of the year which will be determined through voting, young volunteers in community policing, best spiritual supporter of the year, and the best media supporter of the year.