RPAZ conducts workshop after signing a MOU with ZRP
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The ZRP recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Radiation Protection Authority of Zimbabwe (RPAZ). The MOU is aimed at paving ways of strengthening cooperation in the areas of regulation for radiation safety and security of radioactive sources.The MOU also indicated that the RPAZ would implement dedicated training and awareness programmes for ZRP officers countrywide as well as engagement on ways to enhance radiation safety and security of sources.
The RPAZ has hit the ground running following the signing of the MOU when they facilitated their first ever training workshop for police officers on radiation safety and security in Harare recently.
Commissioner Planning and Development, Commissioner Rabson Mpofu officially opened the three-day workshop, which was attended by 27 participants, drawn from the Police Intelligence Unit, Minerals and Border Control Unit, Criminal Investigation Department and Harare Province.
The senior officer said the enforcement of radiation laws would be done in partnership with other sister government departments through an inter-agency approach.
“The inter-agency approach to policing is one of the several robust initiatives pioneered by the Commissioner General of Police,Cde, Dr Augustine Chihuri way back in 1993 when the ZRP first adopted concrete measures to re-engineer its operations to meet national expectations.
“We remain fully conscious that to successfully discharge our Constitutional mandate, we need highly sharpened human resources, hence our desire and readiness to receive training from Radiation Protection Authority of Zimbabwe (RPAZ)” said Commissioner Mpofu.
Police officers were urged to acquaint themselves with the legislation governing radiation safety and security. Members are in a unique position as frontline officers and are at risk of radiation exposure during the course of duty when investigating breaches of the law or attending to emergencies and accidents.
The Principal Inspector at the Radiation Protection Authority of Zimbabwe, Mr Itai Chishanga, said the ZRP and RPAZ shall promote cooperation and collaboration on safety and security of radioactive sources.
“We must identify and strengthen the capabilities of the police in dealing with radiation and safety issues, legislative and regulatory framework, radiation fundamentals among others,” said Mr Chishanga.
The short term effects or deterministic effects of radiation exposure include loss of hair, vomiting, blood changes while long term effects or stochastic effects results in cancer and hereditary situations that affect future generations.
The role of the ZRP in radiation safety and security of radioactive sources is to assist in the enforcement of the legal and regulatory requirements as well as detection of illicit movement of radioactive sources.