31 January, 2007

Multicultural police recruitment

It is over ten days old, but I only came across this strange story today when trawling the Metropolitan Police website and I have not seen it in newsprint:

Former PC Cheema withdraws claim against the Met.

Former PC Tajinda Singh Cheema has withdrawn his claim of unfair dismissal on the grounds of discrimination after admitting to the hearing yesterday that he gave false evidence whilst under oath.

Mr Cheema was dismissed by the MPS [Metropolitan Police Service] in March 2006 for failing to reach the required standard during his probationary period. He claimed that his dismissal was discriminatory and evidence supporting it was fabricated and his claims were reported on the front page of today's Evening Standard.

During the tribunal hearing at the London Central Tribunal in Holborn he made a series of highly damaging accusations of race and religious discrimination against his former colleagues. Counsel for the MPS described his accusations as without 'a shred of evidence' and he withdrew his action after the first day of cross-examination.

Whilst giving evidence Mr Cheema was given advice by the Tribunal Chairman about giving answers that might perjure himself. Had the case continued the tribunal would have heard from 18 witnesses for the MPS, including officers from minority ethnic groups, to show that his claims had no substance whatsoever.

Mr Cheema joined the MPS in August 2001. The normal probation period is two years but Mr Cheema's was repeatedly extended over a five-year period to give him every opportunity to become a competent serving police officer but he was unable to meet the standards we require. The tribunal has dismissed the claims against all respondents.
This strange story raises some worrying questions. Cheema did not make the grade but was given another three years to try. How many of these substandard quota coppers has the Met actually allowed through the system? Would a white individual have received such treatment?

Having failed to become a policeman, Cheema then tried to cash in on it by making false accusations and committing perjury. Is he going to be charged over his behaviour? How many other individuals have done something similar and got away with it?

No comments: