Generally, an employed security guard is employed to take care of security matters by an able employer. The employer must commit his or her money to remunerate the guard. The guard has contractual obligations to deliver his duties and discharge his services according to the nature of the job. Of late, in Kenya, security guards are progressively turning into professional beggars.
It is not strange for one to be embarrassed by an employed guard directly or indirectly begging for money. It is unethical for an employed security officer to get into soliciting for tips, bribe or a token. The ugly part of it is that the person feels very insecure if the officer in charge of his or her security at that moment is the one asking for a tip. How secure do you feel if you fail to give a tip? Imagine the officer is in charge of your life and safety and he is appealing for money? It is unfolding as a common behaviour especially in Nairobi where many security guards turn into beggars especially at night.
The general picture is that most of the officers are under paid. Some earn as low as 7,000 Kshs per month but some even get 3,000 shillings only for the risky job they do. The employer is to blame for this socio-economic exploitation of cheap labour. However, the officer must also adhere to some ethical standards that would show professionalism.
The begging culture is also manifest among the employed service providers. The state officers, government employed staff, especially the police officers, are now known for their begging culture. Since the police is armed and is understood to be possessing state power as law enforcer, most police officers have not become beggars but robbers by violence. Actually it is violent for a police to put his or her victim under psychological torture by quoting the punitive aspect of law in order to create fear in the person. This is done with a commanding tone which is very rude and unethical. Many victims succumb to the demand of the officer and pay in cash or in kind in order to avoid facing justice. It is very common to come across police officers, who are supposed to be in charge of security and safety of the citizens, turning their duty into lucrative business in Kenya.
On the contrary, such unethical police officers, tend to sit back helpless whenever they feel that no income shall come from their work. It is common to see such officers not controlling any vehicle or any person once they perceive that nothing shall come from the person.
Attacking a person psychologically with intention to create fear is unethical. It is not prudent for police officer in full uniform to ask for bribe. It is illegal, inhuman and indecent for a civilised nation to have a begging culture. That means, an armed police officer can as well turn to be a robber by violence. Since it is a crime, some officers would even corroborate with professional thugs and idle boys and girls to assist in stealing.
It is very unethical to put a false evidence on a person because the person failed to comply with the officer’s demand. It is unethical to accuse a person falsely or put some drug in his or her property to built a criminal case against him. Such things still happen in Kenya and people wonder if the officers are trained on ethics.
The begging culture is also evident in hotel services where some under paid waiters turn into professional beggars. Some clients end up supporting but some demand something in exchange. Female workers are the most affected by this behaviour since their male victims end up engaging them in othe immoral activity such as sex.
I find it perplexing to encounter a service provider, employed, begging for a tip. It works negatively against the profitability of the business and employers need to offer trainings on ethics and good conduct.
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