Rakesh Naidoo has become not only the first Indian police inspector, but also first Asian officer to be promoted to the rank of an inspector in the New Zealand Police.
Commissioner Peter Marshall,says while Police is committed to the diversity of its staff, Rakesh had been promoted to Inspector purely on the basis of his abilities, achievements and potential.
“For you, this rank brings additional responsibility because you are going to be a shining light for other police officers from ethnic backgrounds,” the commissioner was quoted in a Police newsletter.
In his role as Strategic Ethnic Advisor, Rakesh has special responsibility for matters relating to communities from Asia, Africa and the Middle East.
He is part of a team known as Maori, Pacific and Ethnic Services, which is led by National Manager Superintendent Wally Haumaha. The team represents Maori, Pacific and Ethnic communities at the highest levels of policing.
Rakesh grew up in South Africa after his forefathers moved there from India.
When he joined New Zealand Police in 2001, it was with a desire to use his background and experiences as a migrant to work with ethnic communities.
“I am very humbled by the appointment and share this honour with my parents, colleagues and community,” Rakesh said.
“I knew that New Zealand Police was a well respected organisation with strong values, and that by working with them I could have a positive impact.”