October 6, 2015 By Victoria Saffa
Chairman of the Independent Police Complaint Board (IPCB) has stated that they would be receiving, investigating and monitoring complaints from members of the public against personnel of the Sierra Leone Police.
Valentine T. Collier was speaking last Saturday at an event aimed at enhancing rapport with the media at the Hill Valley Hotel in Freetown, supported by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Access to Security and Justice Programme (ASJP).
According to Mr. Collier, the IPCB exists to ensure that the Sierra Leone Police is responsive to the needs and concerns of the public, noting that the Board’s mission is to build public trust and confidence in the Police and they will strive to achieve that by seeking to establish the truth, determining fact and ensuring that justice prevails.
He explained that the IPCB is a non-departmental public body established under section 158 of the Constitution of Sierra Leone 1991, Act No.6, and that the functions of the Board are set out in Section 3 of the IPCB Regulations of 2013.
He said the role and function of the IPCB are to receive and investigate complaints of serious nature in a bid to increase public confidence in policing, and that the Board will act as an oversight and investigations body with a national scope and responsibility.
“The IPCB has the power to investigate and recommend discipline or criminal charges against individual police officers or groups of officers as needed, as well as the power to identify problems of a more organizational or systemic nature and to recommend ways in which these can be addressed and improved,” said Collier, who once headed the country’s anti-corruption fight.
He said the IPCB will ensure that the Sierra Leone Police works constructively and effectively with the public, and that citizens have recourse to an independent agency and process that will help to improve policing across the country and increase the public’s confidence in the police as an institution.