Tsav and the Age of His Ideas


When you hear the views of people like a former Commissioner of Police in Lagos State, Alhaji Abubakar Tsav, on contemporary issues of governance and development, the first doubt you would strive to clear is: ‘what ideas did they propound when they held sway in service to father land?’ Certainly, they must have promoted such weird ideas that had contributed to the nation’s underdevelopment in many folds.

Just last week, he said the country was not mature enough for the creation of state police. He told a national daily that the creation of state police would split Nigeria, because according to him, politicians might use it against their political opponents, and that it might lead to job insecurity, because some state governors would tamper with the institution.

“The establishment of state police at this time will signal the beginning of disintegration of the country. Apart from some states not being able to maintain police now, some power-drunk and ambitious governors may use the police against their perceived political opponents. A state Commissioner of Police, who fails to dance to the tune of his governor, may be sacked.

“There may be no job security, professionalism and security of tenure. Our politicians are not civilised enough and tolerant of opposing views and cannot preside over a competent and impartial police force,” he argued, advising the nation to wait until “we are civilised and united and can appreciate justice and fairness.”

While you cannot entirely dismiss his fears, he sounded too much like someone asking that ‘a tie should not to be given to a grown man because he might strangle himself with it’.

Definitely, his fears are parts of the foibles that would help the idea develop and evolve into perfection or what it should be. But to say until Nigeria is ‘civilised and united’ is cheap, anti-development and itself, uncivilised. It speaks to a very poor age of ideas.