The Inspector General of Police recently disclosed that the current 317,000 personnel in the Nigeria Police Force are inadequate to protect around 170 million citizens. Although the Federal Government wants to employ 10,000 new officers out of the 300,000 persons undergoing verification and training (911,000 applied in April), there has been clamour for State Police forces, with a subsisting federal force, as being practised in the USA. To help curb nationwide crimes and ensure quality protection of lives and properties, is Nigeria now ripe for State Police or just a bigger federal force, or a combination of both? What do you think?

ABIMBOLA AKOSILE

* Yes, but the Police must be under the control of the Attorney-General’s office.
– Mr. Feyisetan Akeeb Kareem, Ogwashi-Ukwu, Delta State

* No, it’s not. The antecedents of our leadership at all levels in relation to the use of the Police show that State Police will be grossly abused. The current Federal Police is already abused by those who statutorily have no authority over them; it will be tantamount to official brigandage if State Police is created.
– Mr. Utibe Uko, Uyo, Akwa Ibom State

* Nigeria is more than ripe for state police In those days, we grew to see ‘Yandoka’ that is state police in Hausa and there was peace because you are dealing with the environment well known to you and majority of the people. Crime was well policed and there was nothing like extortion or corruption. The centre should have few of them for their services and leave states to have the greatest number, if we are to enjoy peace.
– Hon. Babale Maiungwa, U/Romi, Kaduna

* Nigeria is not in any way ripe for State Police. Much more, the abuse of office will be worse than what is obtainable with the Federal Police.
– Miss Nkeiruka Abanna, Lagos

* Yes, I believe Nigeria is ripe for a state police system, however, its adoption may not be unilateral or at once. States that are ready and willing to go this path should be allowed to head the path to protect their citizens and economy. We have to put an end to this idea of uniform growth in the country because of our peculiarities. We’ve very unique security situations/challenges which have eluded the capacity of our present national police.
– Mr. Carl Chineme Okafor, Journalist, Abuja

* Considering the security challenges we are confronted with at local and state level, I believe the time is now, though the nation is over-ripe for it.
– Mrs. Mary Ayeni Tehinse, Lagos

* State police with the spate of violence and corruption, sabotage and selfishness will likely make its actualisation complex or unachievable. Our porous borders, unemployment, religious differences and extremism, tribalism, corruption, negative ambitions e.t.c leave a lot to be desired. We need unity, patriotism, truth or honesty and network to genuinely make it work. We have more to gain than not from state policing.
– Ms. Saiki Ometere Tina, Gboko, Benue State

* I reckon Nigeria is 55 per cent ready for state police, meaning we shouldn’t implement now. I suggest we do a trail run with the NSCDC, the civil defence corps. Let us have armed civil defence officers controlled by states. Monitor them closely for three years before we decide on state police.
– Mr. E. Iheanyi Chukwudi, B.A.R. Associates, Apo, Abuja

* Our issues with security threat and abuse of power and human rights will be the order of the day. Going by the mentality of the average Nigerian Police, innocent citizens are being arrested and jailed without any offence committed. We are bound to have an escalated number of innocent citizens in jail especially if you are in the opposition. Governors will go after their opposition contestant during election.
– Mr. Kelvin M. Udoh, Lagos

* For me, once the country is restructured into three or six regions, it will certainly take care of police; thereby reducing insecurity in the land.
– Mr. Okechukwu Ikonne, Ogbor, Oke-Ovoro, Mbaise, Imo State

* Yes, Nigeria is now ripe for state police because our security changes make it obvious that decentralising power of defence will afford other tiers of government full participation, unity, honesty and patriotism. Power belongs to the people, no half measures and security is a collective responsibility as it affects all and sundry. It will address unemployment and curb crime too. USA is doing it successfully.
– Miss Apeji Patience Eneyeme, Badagry, Lagos

* Nigeria as presently structured is not ripe for state police. Most of the states cannot pay their workers’ salary, so they will not be able to finance 36 ‘state police’ if established. The states/regions will only be able to fund their police if Nigeria is restructured into fewer, larger, economically viable federating units with fiscal federalism.
– Dr. Durojaiye Pirisola, Alberta, Canada

* I believe the issue of state police is captured under the call for restructuring, which is decentralising power from the centre and delegating more to the States and Local Governments. Nigeria is ripe for state police, which should be supervised by the federal force to avoid misuse of power or becoming a tool to be used by the Governor.
– Mr. Nwokolo Osita, On-line Commentator, Jabi, Abuja

* With our character of thinking and doing things, Nigeria is not ripe for state police, because the system on ground is very bad, period. What Nigeria Police need are state-of-art arms to fight crimes and regular training to be battle-ready for all crimes and other related offences. Those calling for state police should have a rethink, instead of advising government to equip the Nigeria Police to do well.
– Mrs. Ijeoma Nnorom, Lagos State

* Nigeria is not ripe for state police because of sentiments in every area of Nigerians’ lives.
– Mr. Gordon Chika Nnorom, Public Commentator, Umukabia, Abia State

* Nigeria’s developmental level socially, economically, culturally e.t.c. obviously suggests the urgent need to implement state police, especially in the light of our current spate of unfortunate security challenges. Waiting endlessly for evasive justice from the central government is why jungle justice is easy among the masses. State police like division of labour in advanced nations will tackle issues before they escalate.
– Mr. Apeji Onesi, Lagos

* Nigeria has spent a lot of money on conferences, to find solutions on how to go about it, like the National Conference in 2014. Let us implement the resolutions of the event, for peace to reign. Nigerians are tired of Niger Delta Avengers, Boko Haram, kidnappers, herdsmen, no employment, no food, and farmers cannot even go to till their farms due to fear. Implementing such resolutions will ease the present tension.
– Mr. Dogo Stephen, Kaduna

* I think Nigeria is ripe for state police, as long as the governors do not turn them into ethnic militias and private armies. However, not police personnel in a proposed state have to come from that state, to provide balance and ensure professionalism in crime-fighting. Even the USA is still working on that.
– Mr. Olumuyiwa Olorunsomo, Lagos State

THE RESPONSE

Yes, it is ripe: 8
No, it isn’t ripe: 5
Others: 5
Radical tip: Elevate NSCDC!
Total no of respondents: 18
Male: 13
Female: 5
Highest location: Lagos (7)

Next Week: To Develop Nigeria, is the Current Pain Worthwhile?

Despite assurances by the current ruling administration, an overwhelming majority of Nigerians are suffering untold hardship in the areas of expensive power supply, prohibitive cost of foodstuffs, higher costs of fuel, and rising unemployment. Although some argue that government is on the right development track in the corruption fight and ensuring security, others believe the current pain is due to failed promises. To you, is this pain worthwhile? Will long-suffering citizens still get to enjoy the promised positive development?

Please make your response direct, short and simple, and state your full name, title, organisation, and location. Responses should be sent between today (June 23 & Monday, June 27) to abimbolayi@yahoo.com, greatbimbo@gmail.com, AND abimbola.akosile@thisdaylive.com. Respondents can also send a short text message to 08023117639 and/or 08188361766 and/or 08114495306. Collated responses will be published on Thursday, June 30