Saturday, July 17, 2010

The 1,000th recruit - Helmand Police Training Centre

The British-run Helmand Police Training Centre (HPTC) has produced its 1,000th Afghan National Policeman since it opened in December 2009.

The passing out ceremony this week saw 409 fellow policemen on the square alongside him and was attended by the Helmand Governor, Gulab Mangal, British Ambassador Sir William Patey, Lt Gen Nick Carter and Maj Gen Richard Mills.

One of the top students on the non-commissioned officer patrol-mans course receiving an award from Her Britannic Majesty's Ambassador to the State of Afghanistan Sir William Patey

The 1000th man to pass out of the centre was Patrolman Hayatullah, son of Panji, a Turkman from Shindak who began training in May 2010 and passed out on 14 July 2010.

Like all recruits, before Hayatullah could even begin police training he was registered at Police Headquarters, biometrically screened, medically assessed and drug tested. He was then taken to the new training centre outside Lashkar Gah to join his platoon and begin training immediately.

As one of an intake of 153, Hayatullah was trained by Trooper Daniel Simnet and Corporal Orville Palmer of B Squadron, The Queen’s Royal Lancers, and by subject matter experts from the US Marines and the UK Ministry of Defence Police Force.

Recruits of both the basic and non-commissioned officer patrolman's course on parade after an exercise

Trooper Daniel Simnet who, whilst at the HPTC, has taught himself Dari said "I really enjoy teaching the lessons, its hard work but it is good to be able to teach them skills that will help save their lives when they finish.

“It’s rewarding when they pass out and return to come and see you, and they are still smart and professional police, it gives you confidence that they are making a real difference on the ground.”

Recruits who have successfully completed their training on parade, one of the patrol men proudly holds the Afghan flag

After his first three weeks of basic training Hayatullah founds his training advancing and becoming more complex as the training teams combine in realistic training exercises, including deployments on to route 601 in Lashkar Gah – the main access between Lashkar Gah and Kandahar.

Working from a checkpoint, the recruits learn the vital skill of communicating effectively with the locals they will eventually be sent out to protect.
The recruits are also trained in literacy.

The programme delivered at HPTC has been designed to raise reading levels of recruits so they can accurately process evidence and conduct essential basic administration. The course therefore gives recruits to the chance to better themselves - more than just a policing tool it is a matter of pride.

Recruits taking part in an exercise in a simulated Bazaar. During the serial, police patroled out into the mock bazaar, spoke to locals, reacted to simulated enemy fire and perform casualty and crime scence drills

Cpl Orville Palmer said “The odd thing about Hayatullah was that at the beginning he wasn’t the strongest recruit, but by the end of the course he fully understood his role as a policeman and the pride and excitement he had about returning to help protect his community was really humbling.

“It soon became clear that he had a quick mind and he was even found teaching some of his friends during the evening, which was really rewarding for us as his instructors.”

Major Ben Horne, the Officer Commanding the Helmand Police Training Centre, said:
“The improvement I have seen in Hayatullah is not unique, all of his colleagues have left the HPTC with the skills they need to be policemen in the complicated and difficult environment of Helmand.

"Above all they leave proud of their own achievements and with a sense of pride in the ANP. It is this sense of professional discipline and pride that will help them to remain focussed and carry out the lessons they have learnt back in their communities.

“The progress we see recruits making here at the HPTC is resulting in the ANP being seen as the source of security and stability for the people of Helmand, capable of tackling the insurgency and further reinforcing the ANP’s status in society.”

The VIPs saw Patrolman Hayatullah and his colleagues accept their certificates before departing to their districts. Hayatullah has deployed to Nowzad in the north of Helmand.

Pictures: Cpl Barry Lloyd RLC


  1. That's good of the Brits. But i insist "This is a ghost war: the US and British Soldiers in Afghanistan are fighting for a 'Baseless' course". These people (Afghans) won't succumb to defeat (i use the Rambo III movie as a reference that says "Afghans never die") am not in support of any party but. We all know there are some diplomatic ties involved in this. Money spent on the Afghan war should have been used for Relief Efforts in Africa

    Obama and Cameron should call back all men in this Part of the world as young bloods are dying and it's not good for the Planet in which we are in.

    I commend the HPTC for the training program organized by them as it would go a long way to enhance security in the Helmand province even after the Brits and Yanks (US and British) troops depart Afghanistan. but i also ask this question, won't the Corrupt men in afghan as a tool for their "Evil" vices?

    Thanks to the writter

  2. Great! It's nice to know that Afghan National Policeman are properly trained for them to be able to defend their country and countrymen. Thanks for the post.