The resignation and retirement of police officers, firemen and prison guards is adding to the shortage of manpower at the Department of Public safety.
Acting Commissioner Vaimaga Maiava says about 15 police officers, prison guards and fire men have either resigned or retired.
He says of those who have resigned, several are leaving to take care of elderly parents, moving off-island to educate their children or they want to start a new life in greener pastures.
Others just cite personal reasons for leaving.
Maiava saysnone of the letters of resignation he’s seen cite non payment of overtime as a reason for their decision to leave.
According to Maiava DPS is taking steps to fill the vacancies.
Commissioner Save Liuato Tuitele is working with the Department of Human Resources with support from Governor Lolo Moliga to secure funding for a new police academy at the start of the new fiscal year.
It’s also trying to hire back police officers who had left the force.
Acting Commissioner says they are struggling with the existing manpower nevertheless they are fulfilling their duties of protecting the public and ensuring law and order.
Maiava says he cannot deny DPS is short staffed but assures the police force is not neglecting any of their responsibilities.
He thanks the public for their support and cooperation which he says has been of great help to the police force while its going through this turnover in manpower.
He notes that while crime continues, the territory is peaceful and quiet, except for private and public peace disturbances.