Vietnamese police say short and pot-bellied police officers will be banned from traffic duty in the capital city, Hanoi.
The policy’s aim is to improve the force’s image among the local population. The force has a bad reputation due to multiple corruption and abuse scandals. For example, a recent World Bank survey on corruption in Vietnam found traffic police to be the worst offenders.
Colonel Dao Vinh Thang, the head of Hanoi’s traffic police, stated that they are completing a list of police officers who don’t size up to be sent out of sight.
“Police with pot-bellies, or who are too small, will be moved to office work to avoid their coming into contact with the public,” he confirmed.
Overweight police officers will also undergo mandatory physical training. Vietnam is not the first country to introduce such policies. The UK, South Africa, and Mexico have all introduced measures to help their officers shorten their waistbands.
In addition, all police on duty will be required to carry an official code of conduct to remind them how to perform.
In 2011, officers were banned from wearing sunglasses or lurking behind trees to ambush and fine unsuspecting motorists.
Additionally, in January, women police officers were introduced at key intersections to win over the public by casting a “kindlier” light on the force.