Kandahar Graduates More Policemen through FDD
More than 300 Afghans have become sworn-members of the Afghan National Police recently
Story and Photos by: First Lt. Amy Bonanno, PAO, ARSIC-South
Kandahar – The Regional Training Center (RTC) recently graduated about 330 Afghan police officers, the third graduation of Afghan police officers since the inception of the Focused District Development (FDD) police training program. Earlier in the week, these police officers held a drill competition that highlighted their drill and ceremony skills and held their swearing-in ceremony.
At the drill competition, these highly professionalized police officers showed their marching prowess and skill by competing in marching while their cadre called out commands to them. Brig. Gen. Nasrullah Zarifi, the ANP Regional Training Center Commander, had a little fun with the graduating police officers when he called out commands for certain movements, seeing who was paying attention or not. Everyone got a good laugh out of the game and became more energized about their new mission as police officers as Gen. Zarifi told them all the importance of following and giving proper commands.
Afterward, the police officers participated in the swearing-in ceremony which is the highlight of becoming an Afghan police officer for many. The police officers repeat the oath of a police officer while they are holding the Koran and the weapons they will use to fight, representing their mission to fight for Allah, their country, and their people as their duties. For many Afghans this is a powerful symbol of what it is to be a member of the Afghan National Police.
Two days later, the newly sworn police officers were ready to graduate from the Kandahar RTC and push out to their districts where the real work begins. Many speakers attended such as the out-going Kandahar Police Chief, Brig. Gen. Sayed Aqa Saqeb, who spoke at length about what it means to be a police officer and the importance of their duties.
“For many of you, the real test comes now, now that you’re going to your districts to work to defend the people of our country,” said Gen. Zarifi, who added, “what you have learned here has prepared you but you must have endurance for the fight out there, it will be tough, but I know you can do it.”
Five graduating Afghan police officers from the crowd stepped forward to sing a brief song about being a police officer in Afghanistan.
“Preservation of this country,” “there will be death to our enemies- they are treacherous towards this country,” and “I am the servant of this country” show the importance upon which these new graduates feel about their new jobs as Afghan National Police.
Col. John Cuddy, Regional Police Advisory Commander, said, “you will be tested many times in your districts, and by doing the right thing and triumphing over those you seek to corrupt you, you will rise above your enemies and provide the proper security and governance for the people of Afghanistan.”
The graduation ceremony ended with a flourish of gifts being exchanged and tokens of thanks from the Afghans to the Americans who are helping to make the police a more professionalized force.