Police Scotland ‘diktat’

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Police Scotland’s performance in the Borders was in the spotlight again last week, at the Berwickshire Area Forum.

After two Berwickshire councillors, Michael Cook and Donald Moffat, expressed conflicting views in last week’s ‘Berwickshire News’ on how the Scotland wide service is operating in the region, community council representatives were almost unanimous in their concern about Police Scotland’s new ward reports and their relevance to individual community councils.

The perception of a top down approach and “diktat from central command despite good local engagement” was also discussed.

Councillor Moffat, the council’s executive member for community safety, continues to defend the new set up.

“We have very good police commanders in the Borders and from what I can see we have got a better service,” he said.

However, other councillors had a different view. Councillor Frances Renton said: “ I don’t agree with Councillor Moffat. I go to various community councils and they get reports that are no use to that community council.”

“I also have to disagree with Councillor Moffat. Inspector Scott has a problem - he is the man that has to come and see us and it’s not all sweet and rosy,” added Councillor John Greenwell.

And Councillor Michael Cook said: “There is serious unhappiness but it is not a criticism of local police officers. We value their contribution but there is a hint of disquiet about central command. We shouldn’t be shy in saying what we want.”