Restructuring: IG Distances Force from Governors’ Forum Committee on State Police

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• Urges CPs to be proactive on agitations, visibility policing

Paul Obi in Abuja

The Inspector General of Police (IG), Ibrahim Idris, wednesday distanced the Nigeria Police Force from the purported Committee on State Police set up by the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) as part of the push to restructure the country to true federalism.
The NGF was said to have constituted the committee in response to the clamour for restructuring where the call for state police and true fiscal federalism have become paramount.

But speaking to top police hierarchy made up of Deputy Inspectors General of Police (DIGs), Assistant Inspectors General of Police (AIGs), Commissioners of Police (CPs), Idris debunked claims that the parley between the Nigeria Police and the NGF was to address the need for state police.

The IG told journalists that there was no time when the issue of state police was discussed, stating that “the committee set up is not on state police, so I was surprised with what I read in the newspapers.
“My understanding with that meeting is that the committee was set up to look into our proposals which we gave them, because we are trying to set up a radio and television station for the police.

“The committee was not centred on state police, so I was surprised when I read in the papers they said the committee was set up on state police that was not my understanding with that meeting.”

He further urged CPs across the country to remain vigilant and proactive on recent agitations and threats by some ethnic nationalities, adding: “We have to take seriously some of the agitations, where they are harassing law-abiding citizens, forcing them to relocate.
“I have sent some reinforcement to some states in the Southeast. We have to be proactive in some of these activities, visibility policing is one of the best approach.

“In many cities, seeing policemen will prevent anybody to intimidate or harass innocent citizens, it is a great measure which assures the people of their safety.

“Some of these people gave some datelines, some of these datelines have past, but that does not mean we should relax, we have to enhance our visibility policing so that the people can feel safe that nothing can happen.”
Idris also explained that the police would soon commence the probing of recent deployment of policemen to various locations, including politicians, celebrities among others.