Police administrators in the recent past have become aware of their roles both in the community and also in the political arena. Community policing emphasizes on significant changes in approaches of police administrators. Research shows politicians are normally involved in various criminal practices in order to survive in the political arena. Police administrators must walk a fine line as politicians - accepted within their department by police officers - and also answerable to the community. This paper is an exploration of pitfalls and problems of this balancing act. (Dowell, 2004)
While police administrators can walk a fine line as politicians, they have to be answerable to the community. This balancing act comes along with problems that may not be very easy to solve. Since time immemorial, politics has been referred to as a dirty game. This is because it is normally associated with crime practices in the society. The problem that comes in when police administrators start involving themselves with politics and at the same time carrying out their responsibilities is that they may not combat some crime issues especially those related to politics. (Kleinman, 2000)This is because there are crime issues that are related to politics that police administrators maybe aware of but due to their political aspirations, in case they deal with them then they may never succeed in the political arena. ...
While it may be called a balancing act, in real sense there is lack of proper balance problems that result from this. This is because politicians are normally very busy people with meetings that always go up to late hours in the night. This makes police administrators to spend most of their time carrying out political endeavors. The result is that they fail to attend to their duties as administration officer.
One of the roles of administrative officers is to carry out recruitment of junior police officers. (Royster, 1999) Once they get involved in politics they always have to appeal to other politicians by recruiting relatives to other politicians in order to survive in the political arena. This normally results in police administrators taking bribes in their line of duty. It becomes very hard for them to deal with police administrators who are corrupt. This actually results in increase in corruption within a nation.
It is very hard to be good and bad at the same time. This is the scenario when police administrators come to the frontline of politics at the same time carry out their responsibilities in the community. When a police administrator carries out his duties in the community concerning crime, he may actually be at conflict with some members of the community and yet expect their approval in the political arena. (Manning, 1985) This is a big problem. Some of the people that carry out crime in the society are people who have political back up and once a police administrator carries out legal measures it follows that he or she will be politically disadvantaged.
Another problem that is likely to result from this is in the area of community policing. This could