No excuses acceptedTraffic police want their qat money [Archives:2005/906/Reportage]

December 26 2005

In countries around the world, security forces tend to play a large role in maintaining the country's stability. Here in Yemen, unfortunately, it's the opposite. In one way or another, traffic police are causing chaos through their unjust tactics. Traffic police only get paid the equivalent of $5 for a day's work, which is the reason for this widespread problem. Due to such poor government pay, traffic police take their financial problems into their own hands, taking money from poor innocent citizens driving taxis or buses, trying to provide for the urgent needs of their own families.

Hundreds of transportation drivers complain daily of unjust treatment by traffic police. Blackmailing has become common whenever a simple violation occurs. Nagheeb Abdullah, a poor citizen living off the little he gets from driving his taxi, said, “They are God's worst creation! They'll find the simplest mistake just to blackmail you and openly ask for “”qat money.”” They don't understand it's not our fault they have financial problems – it's the government's. They should go after it