Lae metropolitan superintendent, Anthony Wagambie Jnr, attributed this to the support of three members of the Chinese community in Lae.
“We were approached by them and asked how they could help Police in securing a safer community in Lae,” he stated.
“Lae Market was identified as one of our ‘hot spots’ where petty crimes, street selling, vehicle tampering and general harassment of the public took place.
“This was agreed upon and two High Definition rotating CCTVs were purchased from China and brought into Lae.
“The cameras have been installed on high metal poles; one outside the Market Police Station and the other facing into the market bus stop.
“This would be the first of its kind out of Port Moresby which was used for the APEC last year. Ours is a very small set up which will be used within the Main Market precinct.
“The cameras also cover the main road and front of BSP Bank. It is a small step towards modernising the Police Operations in Lae and I would like to see, and will be campaigning to have, more CCTV coverage in other parts of the city, like Top Town bus stop, Eriku and other identified areas.
“The CCTV, which has been installed, has its control centre in the Market Police station where designated officers there will maintain watch on two hour shift rotations. This is to enable the cameras to be operational at all times.
“The cameras, on arrival into the country, were installed over the weekend.
“Police personnel assigned to operate the cameras were trained on how to use it on Monday and Tuesday.
“From the two test runs, 10 arrests were made on Monday and 10 yesterday. Total of 20 arrests were made from the two-day trial runs using CCTV.
“I am very grateful for the assistance given to Police which will go a long way in making this part of the city safe for our people.
“The cost of all of this and the ongoing maintenance will be with the three who donated the cameras to Police. The cameras are for Police to ensure public safety.
“From my observation of the market, it was a big contrast from what we have experienced previously. The carpark was generally cleared off and the bus stop had buses queued in an orderly manner.
“Arrests made were also from traffic offences where the CCTV identified improper parking and obstructions, where duty members apprehended and dealt with offending drivers.
“We will run the cameras and will assess its effectiveness after two months.”