Kemi Olaitan in Ibadan
The Inspector General of Police (IG), Mr. Muhammed Adamu, yesterday sent a strong warning to erring police officers across the country, insisting that they were employed by the federal government to protect citizens and not to oppress them.
This is just as he said the police need the support of every Nigerian to tackle the various security challenges facing the country as the police cannot do it alone.
The police boss said this last night while addressing some police officers at the Oyo State Police Command headquarters in Eleyele Ibadan, shortly after he delivered a lecture at the University of Ibadan, titled, ‘Security and Protection System: Challenges of Policing in Nigeria.’
Adamu who spoke through the Deputy Inspector General of Police (Research and Planning) who is also the supervising DIG in charge of the South-west, Mr. Peter Ogunyanwo, said the police officers were employed by the government to enforce laws, protect the citizens and not to intimidate them.
The IG while insisting the present number of policemen cannot police the country, appealed to Nigerians to ensure that they cooperate with them in ensuring that they discharged their duties as expected.
According to him, “Because government did not employ us to oppress, government employed us to enforce all laws and to maintain law and order. Every line here has a meaning. You are to make friends with people and not as enemies. And the friends we are talking about is law-abiding people. These are the people you have to take as friends.
“When you see a case, what is in your mind as IPO or DPO when you see a case? What is in your mind, is it to ensure justice or to make money? I want to appeal to all of you, God is seeing you. And there are days that there will be no room for amendments.
“Follow the rule of law. You must ensure that you follow the rule of law. I want to appeal to you that everything is not about money. An average Nigerian believed what is good. They know what is good. When you do a good job, people know how to compensate you”.
He expressed concern on the impact of the bad eggs in the police which has continued to undermine integrity and professionalism of the Nigeria Police force.
The IG maintained that despite the influence of the bad eggs, efforts are being made to ensure that men and officers of the force undergo re-orientation and re-training to enable the police discharge its statutory duties, warning police officers to desist from oppressing members of the public whom they were employed to protect