Keeping the borders safe

Keeping the borders safe

SINGAPORE - Unlike many private security officers, Ms Siti Melati Rahman wears a police-like uniform, boasts a rank - Corporal (CPL), Auxiliary Police Force (APF) - and is even trained to shoot.

The 26-year-old is an auxiliary police officer (APO) with AETOS Security Management, a company that is licensed to supply both armed and unarmed officers.

She is stationed at a land checkpoint, where she performs border security duties such as preventing and detecting intruders and illegal immigrants.

CPL (APF) Siti says: "I decided on a career as an APO as I found the work challenging and it calls for decisive action. I also enjoy interacting with people from all walks of life."

APOs have been making a larger imprint on the law-and-order landscape to combat the twin challenges of crime and terrorism.

They support the work of government security agencies such as the police and the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority.

These days, they can be seen screening travellers at the checkpoints, ushering visitors through scanners at large-scale events and managing crowds at countdown parties.

For example, AETOS has supported the police in major events such as the Singapore Youth Olympic Games in 2010 and the Singapore Grand Prix.

APOs on official duty are granted powers, privileges and immunities similar to those given to police officers.

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