The head of the Lloydminster RCMP will soon be leaving the city.
Inspector Suki Manj told 106.1 The Goat he was notified last week by his superiors he was being considered for transfer within the RCMP. On Wednesday, he was informed he would be transferred back to Surrey, British Columbia, to serve as the Regional Duty Officer for the Lower Mainland, working out of the E Division headquarters.
The timeline on Manj’s exit from the Lloydminster detachment will depend on how long it takes for the paperwork to get processed, and he estimated on the process taking around a month and a half, two at most.
“If you’re selling a home, it might take longer, depending on market conditions, so those are choices I have to make, with my wife, to decide what we’re going to do with our home, and what options are available to us,” said Manj.
As for the change from Inspector to Regional Duty Officer, Manj said it was a natural move.
“It’s pretty much a natural progression for anyone in charge of a detachment,” said Manj.
“I relate it to hockey. A coach has a shelf life of x amount of years, whatever it may be.”
Manj also said the decision to leave the city did not come lightly, and that the next few weeks will be “business as usual.”
“You continue on, and part of knowing that you’re leaving is that it sometimes takes a little extra effort to keep motivated and involved, but for me it’s easy,” said Manj.
“I love what I do here, I love the community, and the people, I can’t tell you how amazingly I’ve been treated, and my family and my kids. I’ve met amazing people here, and my neighbours are wonderful. Some of the best friendships I have ever had are here. When I first got here, I knew no matter when I left, how I left, this was going to be a very difficult transition back to where I wanted to go, because of the way that I have been treated here.”
Manj arrived in the Border City back in the late summer of 2014, and from the start he had said his intentions were to develop more partnerships in the community, and align the goals of the police with what the community saw as important. He also wanted to deal with issues of traffic, organized crime, and property crime.
With Manj now on his way out, the foundation for new functions of the RCMP in the city has been laid, from a crime analyst brought on in 2015 to programs aimed at dealing with prolific offenders and criminals who commit their crimes due to their social situation.
“We’ve laid the groundwork for all these programs, and hopefully these things continue on,” said Manj.
“In any job, you want to leave a bit of a legacy, and I think these crime-reduction strategies and the prolific offender program and the social chronic program, just the general relationship that the RCMP now has with our partners and the community, I am very proud of that.”
Manj said he hoped whoever was chosen as his replacement would be someone who believed in those same efforts, while bringing their own ideas to the table. He also re-iterated the goal of community trust and engagement, which has been a constant refrain throughout his time at the head of the local detachment.
“I just hope that what I brought to this community is a sense of belonging with the RCMP, that the RCMP is part of the community, and we are the community with you,” said Manj.
“I love the sense of belonging to a community, and by far this community has been one of the closest things for me to family, and I hope that continues, and that people keep trusting us.”
Though he said he was sad to be leaving the community, he was also pragmatic, saying that opportunities had to be taken as they come up. Manj also has family back in British Columbia, and still owns a home in the province.
Asked for what he wanted to say to every citizen of the Border City, Manj said he wanted everyone to know how important they are to the police.
“That was my main goal, to make sure the public knows why we’re here, what we’re doing and why we’re doing it, so that they know where they fit into all that,” said Manj.
“Trust us, that we are here to make sure that they are safe, and question us when you feel that you might not be treated as you want.”