Politics

'Do you deserve to keep your job?' Tova grills Police Minister over rising youth crime

Gangs, guns and rehabilitation are covered but no targeted funding for ram raids despite the clear and urgent need.

Police Minister Poto Williams spoke to Tova early on Monday morning.

The Police Minister says the government will be able to deliver 1,800 new police officers six months ahead of schedule. Tova O'Brien asked the minister what the original deadline for that promise was.

Williams said it was the end of June 2023.

O'Brien asked the Police Minister to "try again" asking once again what the original deadline was.

"Now, there are two figures that are often misquoted or conflated together," Police Minister Poto Wiliams said.

"So the first target was 1,800 new cops. The second target was for 1,800 lift, which means that on top of the baseline number that we had, we would have 1,800 extra. 

"Now, another way to look at that, since we have been in government, we have had 3,000 graduates from police college.

"So we are looking at increasing the number of cops, taking into effect attrition and retirement, by 1,800."

O'Brien said that the original coalition agreement said they would strive towards adding 1,800 new police officers over three years. This would have set that original deadline at October 2020.

She says the government are two years late in delivering on that promise, and that they are "shifting the goalposts" and finds that "extremely disingenuous".

O'Brien and the Police Minister shot back and forth on whether or not the government are adjusting the goalposts to make their targets seem not only on track - but ahead of schedule. O'Brien then asked Williams if she thinks she will be keeping her job in the reshuffle.

"Absolutely," Williams responded. "I'm not going anywhere, Tova."

O'Brien asked if the minister thinks she deserves to keep her job.

"$562 million of extra funding to police. That's what this government is delivering," said Williams.

O'Brien said it's going to take a lot more than money to solve our rising youth crime problems.

Listen to the full interview between Police Minister Poto Williams and Tova above.

You can also download the full interview on the Tova podcast, and listen on the go. Check it out on the rova app or wherever you get your podcasts.