The awareness campaign is phase 1 of the Central Province police command’s election operations plan.
The Operational plan for the awareness campaign has been divided into three phases:
1. Pre-election operation which includes general awareness and intelligence gathering;
2. Election proper operation which includes polling and counting; and
3. Post election operation is a mop up exercise that caters for any disruptions that may occur after the declaration of winning candidates.
From the National Population Census projection of 2017, the Central Province population will increase to approximately around 350,000. The population rise will be due to the major economic activities in the Central Province. LNG project at Papa/Lealea Hiri, cassava project in Rigo, Tolokuma Gold Mine in Goilala and rubber production in Abau respectively.
PPC Asi is concerned with his current manpower strength of 185 regular police personnel and 11 reservists. He said that is a ratio of one policeman for every 3,500 people in the province.
Asi hopes the election awareness campaign by his police team will create a better understanding among the Central people to conduct a safe and free 2017 National Election.
Central Police Sgt Lua Auri and his team of policemen went to Maopa village along the Aroma Coast last week Friday and carried out election awareness with the assistance from the Maopa Ward 3 LLG councilor Pere Enara.
Speaking at the market place in Ward 3 of Maopa village, the police team emphasised on the respect of individuals to vote freely without being intimidated and undue influence by supporters from other candidates.
The Police team also told the villagers that intending candidates should not campaign before the issuing of the writs. Those who campaign before the writs are issued will be arrested and charged under the Electoral Laws.