The concept for the community policing team, which involves hiring and training people from communities next to the mine, was conceived in 2015. After close collaboration with the Tanzanian Police Force and local communities, a number of people who had already been working with the mine’s community observers’ programme joined other volunteers in the newly formed community policing team. A memorandum of understanding between the communities and Geita, which is renegotiated annually, provided the basis for the team’s establishment.
This proactive initiative has involved the community from the start. Members of the policing team are rotated annually, broadening the opportunity for local residents who wish to be involved to receive training and earn an income. Some trained members have gone on to work for private security firms and some are engaged by local authorities in various government operations.
A steering committee oversees the community policing team, but the Tanzanian Police Force holds ultimate control. Geita sits on the committee and provides funding for the project. The community contributed land for the construction of the training centre, while the police force contributed the centre’s building materials.
Given its continued success, we plan to roll out the initiative to more communities around the mine.