Security for and by All

Steps by the authorities to bolster security efforts in key tourism areas of the island that are increasingly becoming the target of thieves are welcome. It should not, however, be solely left to the police and other agencies to prevent such crimes.

Everyone who has a stake in Bail’s future, which like many places around the world nowadays is based on location security, must play a proactive role in ensuring their neighbourhoods are safe and as protected as possible from attack in whatever form.

Bali has recently suffered a string of heinous crimes against foreigners living here; some have tragically been killed. There continues to be a nonstop series of break-ins at foreign-owned villas on the island, in operations that are apparently well planned: the thieves monitor their target before deciding to strike.

This week police shot two alleged thieves in Denpasar as they attempted to flee from capture; another was apprehended unharmed. The men are suspected of involvement in a gang targeting luxury villas. Police said the head of the gang is still at large.

Operations to thwart the threat of terrorism have been steadfast and concrete. There are now towering monitoring cameras at strategic areas, from the beaches to the main roads to shopping areas. Similar efforts must be made at village level to repel low-level crime, which can have fatal consequences, when burglars encounter people in homes they had thought were empty.

This means that everyone must be aware, on the lookout and ready to report any suspicious activity to the authorities, be it the village chief or neighbourhood police.

We have already been struck, twice, by terrorism, and overcame the odds. Another, festering problem needs to be struck down, before Bali turns into a gangland-style island of crime.

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