In view of the increasing rate of kidnapping, killings and other crimes across the country, the Inspector-General of Police (IG), Mohammed Adamu, yesterday deployed police dogs to railway stations across the county.
The IG explained that deployment is expected to complement the existing security measures put in place for the security and safety of passengers and critical infrastructure of the Nigeria Railway Corporation across the country.
He also added that the deployment of the dogs was meant for detection and prevention crimes along the railway corridors.
The dogs are for patrols, surveillance, detection and apprehension of criminals in and around railway facilities.
Before this recent deployment, about 1000 additional police personnel were deployed to the Nigeria Police railway Command.
Speaking during the flag-off of K9 deployment to all railway stations, the IG said: “Indeed, K9 are known to possess extra-ordinary capacity for detection of Improvised Explosives Devices (IEDs), narcotics and other illicit drugs, firearms and other prohibited items which criminals usually engage for the perfection of their criminal activities.
“By this event today, our plan is to maximise our unique K9 strength to complement other sections that have been deployed as part of the broad policing architecture which we recently emplaced towards addressing our internal security challenges.
“This unprecedented deployment was designed to address the manpower gap of the command and reposition them to address vulnerabilities, projected threats, and security challenges which the increasing human traffic and expanding assets of the Nigeria Railway Corporation may present.
“With today’s initiative, passengers, staff, and indeed, all the citizens of this country can further be re-assured of their security as they patronise the services of the Nigerian Railway Corporation.”
Adamu also assured that all the assets of the police would continually be mobilised and deployed towards denying criminal elements of any space to operate in any location in the country. He also solicited the support of members of the public to curb the menace.
“We encourage all citizens to embrace the concept of ‘if you see something, say something’. Indeed, our appeal now is ‘if you suspect something, say something’. This is a civil obligation of all citizens and this is the most potent weapon towards collectively winning the war against elements bent on threatening our security.”
Also speaking, the Deputy Inspector-General of Police (DIG) in charge of Operations, Abdulmalik Ali, assured members of the public that the dog handlers have been trained in techniques and tactics of firm control over dog. The DIG who was represented by AIG in charge of Operations, AIG Peter Ogunyanwo said: “To ensure professionalism, through dog handlers have undergone intensive training with the dogs in terms of agility, criminal attacks, sniffing minute quantity of IEDs or any of its composition.”
While highlighting some of the challenges witnessed by the Force Animal Branch, Ali stated that the department lacks adequate trainers.
According to him: “We are in dearth shortage of dogs to cover identifies vulnerable beats and we lack dog trainers. It is on record that there are only three dog trainers which are grossly inadequate to cover the entire country, particularly in the area of crowd control.”
He urged the IG to look into the challenges with a view to addressing them in order to enhance the operational capacity of the department.