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In the wake of the different agitations and uprisings happening across the country, the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Fatai Owoseni, on Thursday canvassed for peaceful co-existence and unity while addressing stakeholders in the state.
While speaking at a town hall meeting held at Glover Hall, Lagos Island, he said it was high time we all asked how have we fared, adding that the agitation across the country was for Nigerians to have a rethink.
The town hall meeting was based on the directives of the Inspector-General of Police, Solomon Arase, to all commissioners of state police commands.
According to the IG, the town hall meeting is part of the strategic initiative of the Nigeria Police Force aimed at adopting community policing practices in addressing internal security challenges.
The IG’s directive was to enhance the process of reassurance policing and need for peaceful coexistence and sensitivity to each community’s value, space and interest.
In his speech, Owoseni said the leading organisation in bringing peace and preventing conflict is the Nigeria Police, adding that they are the symbol of unity in the nation.
He said, “That is the reason the IG decided that we should champion the cause and bring people from all divide ( youths, men, women, road transport workers and artisans) together.
“Another mistake we make is to refer to herdsmen as Fulani herdsmen. Some retired civil servants even own cows. Even in our markets, some are sold by Yorubas.
“There is no Hausa, Yoruba or Igbo in this country. We are interwoven. The IG wants that spirit that we display in sports to be displayed in all things and leave in peace. We don’t have a choice but to live in peace.
“We are causing havoc to ourselves without knowing. Violence does not pay anybody. One of the principles of community policing is partnership.
“We all have a duty to check the police. Tell us when we are wrong to help us chart a course for a better police.
“We all have a role to play. Pastors, clergy, traditional rulers and Muslims clerics, ahold solve problems the society.”
On kidnapping, he said, “The people that are kidnapping people either for ransom or ritual killings, it has expiry date.
“This is because what you are doing needs to be serviced and if you keep doing it, one day, the thing will require for your own blood.”