Yemi Akinsuyi in Abuja
The Nigeria Police Force said it has sanctioned 20 officers of various ranks across the country for misconduct, following complaints from members of the public through its Complaint Response Unit (CRU) between November 2015 and March 2016.
The Officer in Charge of the CRU, Abayomi Shogunle, stated this in a quarterly report made available to THISDAY yesterday in Abuja.
He said: “In the report we released in the first 100 days and up till now, about 20 officers with different ranks have been sanctioned across the country.”
Shogunle said the officers have gone through the various disciplinary procedures in the force.
He disclosed that between January to March 31 the CRU received and processed 1,054 complaints from across the 36 states including the FCT.
CRU boss said Lagos State tops the complaint chart with 239 complaints representing 22.68 per cent, Federal Capital Territory (FCT) 190 complaints, representing 18.03 per cent, Rivers with 100 complaints, 9.49 per cent.
He noted that the unit received only one compliant each from Ekiti, Sokoto and Yobe States, representing 0.09 per cent.
He said out of the number of complaints received, 899 cases were resolved and after investigation, 96 cases were discovered to be false while 59 cases were pending.
Shogunle, who disclosed that during the period under review, 21 distress calls were received by the unit, said there was a consistent decline in the number of complaints from Ebonyi, Benue, Oyo, FCT, Zamfara, Ogun, Bayelsa, Niger, Ondo and Yobe States.
He attributed the decline to the sanction against erring police officers that had deterred others from committing same crime.
He said the unit would make recommendations to the Inspector -General of Police, on how to address the rising cases of complaints in some states.
“We are still studying the reports and in the coming days we are going to make appropriate recommendations to the Inspector-General of Police how the situation can best be addressed,” he said.
He said one of the challenges of the unit had been the inability of the unit to create more awareness among the grass roots.
Shogunle said basically the unit had partnered with the media to help in disseminating activities of the unit at the rural areas, adding that using the various police formations to create awareness would be counterproductive.
The officer in charge said with time, most Nigerians would be aware of the existence and importance of the unit, as the establishment of the unit had minimised complaints against the police and also changed the ways members of the public interact with the police.
He said: “I can conveniently say that the CRU has significantly changed the way members of the public and police interact with each other.”
He advised members of the public to always obey the police officer and report any misconduct through the platforms provided by the unit.