Alleged contraventions of the law occurring at the Honiara Botanic Garden need to be investigated
The city’s Botanic Garden was recently upgraded to further HBG plans to conserve biodiversity and cultural knowledge with the aim of promoting and encouraging a greater appreciation of flora and biodiversity through education and research.
Few, I would have thought, would disagree with the HBG planning.
Not so, it seems.
Georgina Kekea, writing in today’s Solomon Times, quotes the Director of the Herbarium, Myknee Sinkolo, as saying, “A lot of unwanted activities are still happening at the Honiara Botanic Garden”
Mr. Sinkolo told Georgina that visitors play loud music, consume kwaso and participate in illicit activities.
Mr. Sinkolo lays the blame on a certain type or group of visitors that frequent the garden.
“The ministry currently employs two security officers but they are not capable of dealing with issues of law and order. The officers also only work at night.
“The police hardly patrol this way
“It is sad to see lack of respect for the environment, people and authority”, Mr.Sinkolo told Georgina.
The allegations raised by Mr. Sinkolo need to be investigated by the police if it is true there are breaches of the law occurring in the Botanic Gardens and perhaps the HBG could be patrolled as part of community policing activities.
In 1997, I introduced a policing policy that was based on a criminological theory that visible signs of crime, including anti-social behavior and civil disorder in an urban environment encourage further more serious crimes.
The broken window theory, as the criminological theory, became known was part of a policing policy that I had used throughout my earlier police career in several countries. I had been taught from the onset of my service that by looking after the contraventions of the law, the minor offences, the bigger crimes were often reduced.
In today’s Honiara a closer relationship with the public would do away with a strict zero tolerance policy and why I believe the allegations that have been raised relating the HBG could best be dealt with by community policing practices to prevent further anti-social behavior.
If police investigate and find evidence of crimes by way of illicit activities, then of course, I am confident appropriate action will be taken.