MZUZU UNIVERSITY DEPARTMENT OF GOVERNANCE

MZUZU UNIVERSITY
DEPARTMENT OF GOVERNANCE, PEACE AND SECURITY
STUDIES
CONCEPT NOTE OF PROPOSED RESEARCH TOPIC
SUBMITTED TO:
MISS T. THINDWA
SUBMITTED BY:
BSS/38/17
TOPIC:
AN INVESTIGATION OF THE PRIVATISATION OF THE MALAWI POLICE SERVICE: THE CASE OF MPINGWE AND MUDI POLICE UNITS

AN INVESTIGATION OF THE PRIVATISATION OF THE MALAWI POLICE SERVICE: THE CASE OF MPINGWE AND MUDI POLICE UNITS
Background of the study
The privatisation of government institutions started around 1980s during the era of Kamuzu Banda but became popular in the era of Bakili Muluzi where a lot of government institutions were privatised (Chirwa, 2000). This privatisation extended into the security sector where private institutions started dominating the security industry. However, while this was the development, the Malawi Police Service and other government security agencies like Malawi Defence Force remained state institutions to provide public security.

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Recently, the growing demand for security has encouraged a number of communities in Malawi to partner with the Malawi Police Service by providing infrastructure, transportation and financial support. As it has recently been seen in the years 2010 and 2012, the Indian communities of Mudi and Mpingwe respectively, constructed buildings where police units were demarcated adjacent to hostels with kitchen fittings. Police officers with the majority of newly employed police officers were deployed to work at these respective police units. All the police officers were and are still provided with launch every day and some cash at the end of each month. Each community also bought a police patrol vehicle and employed about three Indian civilian drivers to drive the car in shifts. The vehicles maintenance and fuel to keep the vehicles running is the communities’ responsibilities. Ever since their establishment, surrounding communities; Mtopwa, Namatapa, Kanjedza, Maselema among others have complained that these police units only provide security to their respective communities.

However, this study seeks to depict two case studies, namely; Mudi and Mpingwe where such issue seem to have been rooted.
2.0 Problem Statement
The Malawi Police Service represents state monopoly over legitimate use of violence. The role of the police goes beyond the traditional view of maintaining public safety and order to the reinforcement and promotion of the existence and continuity of the state. Section 153 sub section 1 of the constitution of Malawi clearly stipulates that, ‘the Malawi Police service shall be an independent organ of the executive, which shall be there to provide the protection of public safety and the rights of persons in Malawi according to prescriptions of this constitution and any other law. However, while this is the case, the Malawi Police Service has been seen to have been undergoing gradual privatization both directly and indirectly in the recent years. This study, draws two case studies of Mpingwe and Mudi police units in which elements of privatization of the police is being manifested. The major concern of the study is that the consequence of such privatization is that the public tend not to be satisfied with the services which are meant for them since only the minority group benefit from such public resource. When a state reaches that extent of having its police privatised, then ‘the state no longer wholly fulfils its Weberian form’ (Small, 2006). Small argues that, in that way the state might be seen to be in retreat; where there is a steady erosion of state powers and capacities that once signified its being.
This study, therefore, wishes to investigate the privatisation of the Malawi Police Service in the absence of the legally instituted privatisation framework and to check on the responsibility of the police on its citizens.
3.0 Main Research Question
Why is the Malawi Police Service privatised in the absence of the legally instituted framework?
4.0 Objectives of the study
4.1 Main Objectives
This study aims at investigating the privatisation of the Malawi Police Service in the absence of legally instituted privatisation framework.

4.2 Specific Objectives
i. To assess the existing systems of control and performance practices for Mpingwe and Mudi Police Units.
ii. To examine the critical components and mechanisms for the performance of Mpingwe and Mudi Police units.

iii. To analyse the performance framework that are used by Mpingwe and Mudi Police Units.

Definitions of key concepts of the study
Privatisation: Is the transfer of ownership of an enterprise, business or service from the public to the private sector or the delegation of former government functions to the private sector (Berg & Berg, 1997).

Privatisation of security: refers allowing private actor to provide security or act in a way in which the state is usually assumed to act (Chojnacki & Branovi?, 2010).
Public good: It is a good that, once produced, can be consumed by an additional consumer at no additional cost (Holcombe, 1997)
Security: It is the protection of the territorial integrity, stability, and vital interests of states through the use of political, legal, or coercive instruments at the state or international level (Stan, 2004).

Units of Analysis
This study will involve the organisational and community levels of analysis where police officers from Mpingwe and Mudi Police Units, Limbe Police Station and individuals from Mpingwe, Mudi and surrounding communities will be interviewed. The reasons for the level of analysis is that these areas will best respond to the research question at hand.
7.0 Methodology
7.1 Research Design
The study is exploratory in nature as it seek to investigate if the Malawi Police Service has been privatised. This will be done through the qualitative approach which will provide the most needed data in accordance to the objectives of the study.
7.2 Sampling
The study will involve a population sample of thirty six respondents within the Limbe Policing area. It will include twenty police officers, five from each police unit with the Officer In-Charges inclusive, and ten from Limbe Police station who once worked for the two police units. The study will also involve at least two people of influence from each six surrounding communities of Mpingwe and Mudi Police Units and finally two people from the Mpingwe and two people from Mudi communities.
7.3 Data Collection Techniques
Data collection will be done by means of interviews. In this study individual in-depth interviews will be done with all respondents.

7.4 Data Analysis
Data collected will be analyzed through content analysis which will involve summarizing key findings from the interviews.
8.0 References
Berg, A., & Berg, E. 1997, ‘Methods of privatization’, Journal of International Affairs, 50(2): 357–390.

Chirwa, E. W. 2000, The Promise of Privatization: Financial and Operating Efficiency in Malawi Manufacturing. University of Malawi and Wadonda Consult
Chojnacki, S. & Branovi?, Ž., 2010, ‘New Modes of Security. The Violent Making and Unmaking of Governance in War-torn Areas of Limited Statehood’, in Risse, Thomas/Lehmkuhl, Ursula (eds.) Governance without a State? Policies and Politics in Areas of Limited Statehood, New York NY: Columbia University Press, (in print).

Constitution of Malawi, 2001
Holcombe, R. R., 1997, A Theory of the Theory of Public Goods. Review of Austrian Economics 10, no. 1 (1997): 1-22 ISSN: 0889-3047
Small, M., 2006, Privatisation of Security and Military Functions and the Demise of the Modern Nation-State in Africa. The African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD). Occasional Paper Series: Volume 1, Number 2.
Stan, F. (2004), The Security-Development Nexus: Conflict, Peace and Development in the 21st CenturyNew York Seminar 2004 West Point, New York 3–7 May 2004777 United Nations Plaza, New York, NY 10 017 w w w. i p a c a d e m y. o r g

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