Kabul, May 2012. 175 ANP officers seeking promotion to Major felt the heat of exam pressure at the end of May as they undertook their final examinations at the conclusion of the "Future Leaders programme", in the bright sunshine at the Staff College car park. This was the final act of a course which commenced back in February following a national selection process to find the best Captains. The successful applicants have received intense training at Staff College to fast track them for promotion.
EUPOL's Training Component (ETC) has played several roles throughout the course. In the planning stages ETC were approached by MoI to advise upon; selection criteria, process transparency and maintaining the confidentiality of examination content. Superintendent Ralph Logan was entrusted to deliver the selection examination papers which had been stored in a safe in EUPOL HQ, and he then observed the conduct of the examination. Soon after, Dirk van Vierssen was invited to observe the examination results moderation process and candidate interviews.
A series of lectures were given by ETC to the course students, covering; Leadership Competencies, Code of Conduct, operational leadership and judicial practice. The intensity of the final examination was matched by the bright sunshine and heat in the car park. The subjects being tested included: legal rights of citizens, investigative procedures, islamic knowledge, logistics, police tactics and navigation techniques.
Captain Khaliq from Kabul said: “I have learnt a lot in this course and I want to use all of the skills if I am chosen to be a Major.” Captain Shaffiq said of the exams: “They were tough questions but I had studied my notes carefully. I want to be a Major in the ANP to make my family proud.”
Superintendent Logan said: “This thorough and transparent process that has been constructed by the Afghan National Police (ANP) and the Ministry of Interior (MoI) is a very significant step forward. There are regular accusations of promotion by nepotism and patronage made about the ANP but this process demonstrates a concerted effort to challenge that perception. Although I have never seen an exam take place outdoors before, it was good to see how seriously the exams were taken by all those present. We could watch from our office window and the looks of concentration on the students faces were testament to the tough nature of the exam questions.”