As BPS tightens screws
Members of Botswana Police service who are not physically fit will no longer be promoted until they pass the fitness test.
According to a savingram dated 9th April 2018, which was leaked to this publication, Botswana Police Service is introducing a new Fitness Standing Order.
The savingram says that all police officers of the ranks of Constable up to Senior Superintendent will undergo a mandatory test that will cover four fitness components.
It will cover, flexibility; which is movements of body joints throughout the full range of motion, muscle endurance; the ability of muscles to perform physical activity without getting easily tired, muscle strength; the power produced in muscles and agility; the ability to change directions.
The savigngram further says that after maternity leave, women will be required to produce a fitness certificate before participating fully in the Physical Proficiency test.
During recruitment, all potential recruits including officer cadets will undergo a series of tests, which they shall be expected to pass in order to be considered for enlistment.
“Fitness reports shall be submitted to commissioner of police on annual basis,” states the savingram in part and continues to say that all police establishments must have fitness instructors whose role will be to implement fitness activities at their respective establishments. However police officers have decried the new development, arguing that it is a way of trying to stop their career progression. Talking to The Voice on a condition of anonymity, some officers said that the examination system has been unfair.
“There is slow progression for junior officers and even if we pass the annual examination, it does not guarantee promotion. Now with the new system that does not include our superiors it means we will never get promoted,” said a police constable. Meanwhile, Botswana Police’s Public Relations Officer, Dipheko Motube refused to comment on the matter saying it is internal. “This is an internal matter that cannot be discussed with the media,” Motube said.