Delta State Governor, Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan.
By Victor Efeizomor in Asaba
Acting Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Abubakar and the Governor of Delta State, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan, yesterday openly disagreed over the desirability of the police order to abolish road blocks across the nation’s high ways.
Abubakar who was in Asaba, Delta State capital to inaugurate 60 police patrol pick-up vans and some communications equipment donated by the state government, said during a town hall meeting with stakeholders in the state that the disbandment of police check points across the country was in line with the new policy of checking corruption in the rank and file of the police.
Abukakar said road blocks obstruct the free flow of traffic, adding that “if you put stones, drums, tires on the road, that we shall not allow because this is the only country in the world were such things happen, its better to move forward. I was Commissioner of Police in Lagos State, I did not use road blocks in Lagos, we use the Rapid Response Squad (RRS) vehicles and we were able to check crime. If policemen are doing what they ought to do, they do not need road blocks,” he added.
But Uduaghan said soon after the police check points were dismantled from the roads, there was an upsurge in the rate of crime in the state as kidnappers and armed robbers started having a field day.
“When the road blocks were off, there was increase in armed robbery between Warri and Sapele, there was so much pressure to bring back the road blocks , as much as possible we should allow security agencies to excises some discretion in some of this matters , I don’t believe that there should be a hard and fast rule , that there must not be road blocks , there must be road blocks.
“There has to be road blocks from the Asaba and Onitsha end of the Niger Bridge, there has to be road blocks towards the boarders towns when going to Benin, there has to be road blocks when leaving Ibusa or the riverine axis , why am I saying this, Asaba is a place that has so many exits, so many roads that leads out of Asaba, including the rivers. So we have criminals coming from other states to commit crime here and escape through these routes.
“We should somehow allow the security agencies who understands the partan of the criminals without putting unnecessary pressures on the methods they are using , because it may be counter-productive. There is some negative image about the state in the area of security and criminality, we need to manage the situation”, he posited.
Meanwhile, Abubakar announced the arrest of six persons who is alleged to have involved in kidnapping of the soccer star, Christian Ogbodo who was kidnapped.
The IG who stood side by side with Christian Ogbodo while briefing the press, said the international football star was kidnapped while he was parking his car to attend church services in Ekpan.
He added that the kidnappers who demanded N30 million as ransom were arrested following a tip off in Emevor, in Isoko North local government area of the state where the soccer star was rescued
He said the practice was not only uncivilised but that it was out of fashion as Nigeria was the only country practicing the mounting of barricades and road blocks on the nation’s high-ways.