Politics undermining policing progress

The BBC report of the announcement today that 2 of the 8 PSNI stations, the future of which the public was being consulted on, are to remain open exemplifies the problems still faced by policing here.

From the initial recommendation by Hugh Orde that they should close, to the process of a public consultation, and the continued resistance to movement on this issue by, in this example, the DUP MLA Arlene Foster –

“I remain gravely concerned about the closure of other stations,” she said.

“Particularly at a time when terrorist and criminal activity is still a serious threat.”

It’s a resistance echoed by the, frankly, far more sinister comments of the Sinn Féin Member of Parliament Michelle Gildernew.. who equates police stations to spy bases within communities –

“The majority of nationalists do not want these spy bases in their communities.”

and both are unchallenged by the acceptance of the compromise by the SDLP MLA Alex Atwood

“This is the right balance.”

All this combines to re-inforce the view of policing as just another political bargaining chip – rather than a required public service to counter criminal activity, being deployed in the most effective manner possible.

Btw, the elevation of the ubiquitous community representatives to the status of a semi-official police force can be seen to be yet another example of the, NIO endorsed, increasing, not decreasing, politicisation of policing.

  • crat

    Shock horror, Pete reveals Alex Attwood is supporting a completely politicsed police farce.

  • Fermanagh Young Unionist

    Although keeping these two stations open is a step in the right direction it has to be said that it is still a bloody disgrace that the other 6 are still due to shut.

    I have a question, now seeing that the Newtownbutler station is to ‘remain open’ will it actually become a fully functioning police station again or will it just remain as it has been of late as one of the counties three ‘lock and leave’ stations??? Policing in this county is a disgrace; we already had 3 stations effectively shut in May of this year: Belleek, Belcoo & Newtonbutler. These stations are all based along the border; Belleek was even attacked by the Real IRA last December.

    I see our ‘MP’ is talking crap again,

    “The majority of nationalists do not want these spy bases in their communities.”

    Well maybe if she got off her fat a** she would realise that a number of these ‘spy bases’ due for closure are in the most Protestant/Unionist villages in Fermanagh!

  • bertie

    Call me cynical, but I would not put it past the powers that be to have decided on the closures added another two to the origional list so that they can be conceded after “after public consultation”.

  • middle-class taig


    You’re beginning to think like a fenian.

    We’ll have you at Brewster in no time.

  • BogExile


    PSNI human rights officials have drwn up a plan to completely remove the police from policing in an effort to secure republican endorsement of the service.

    Speaking at a press conference in a pleasantly pastel shaded rubber room, Ms Doncha Justluvit said:

    ‘ we feel that if police officers simply abandoned their uniforms, moustaches (ladies included), vehicles and police barracks and confined their activities to community work such as retirement, the nationalist community would at last have confidence in policing.’

    Commenting on the decision to retain the 2 Fermanagh police stations she added, ‘well, we don’t really know where Fermanagh is but we hear there are some Protestants in it who are unfortunately still attached to now obsolete pre-Patten notions of policing such as effectiveness, crime fighting and community reassurance.’ The sooner they realise that this is now the job of Sinn Fein the better.’

  • looking in

    Is it not the case that the PSNI have stipulated that police stations that are no more than 5 minutes drive away from at least FOUR fastfood takeaways can remain open ?

  • pacart

    Organised crime gang want police stations shut, suprise suprise