NISER: Digital Policing ‘ll Enhance Effective Crime Control in Nigeria

Yinka Kolawole in Osogbo

A landmark research on “Digital Policing and Crime Control” conducted by the Nigerian Institute of Social and Economic Research (NISER) has revealed that crime would be reduced to the barest minimum with deployment of digital technologies in policing.

This was made public yesterday at the institute’s monthly seminar series.  In the presentation of the outcomes of the research, which was carried out in Lagos and Oyo State Police Commands, it was stated that digital policing would enable the police to accomplish better outcomes which included increasing the productivity and effectiveness of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF), simplifying the activities of the force, and hastening the accomplishment of officers’ work.

The presenter, who is a Research Fellow in the Social Policy Department, NISER, Dr. Peter Tomoloju, revealed further that deployment of digital technologies in policing would enhance the security of the police and that of the citizens discouraging crime for the fear of detection and arrest, raising the credibility of the police force, increasing citizens’ belief in the police. 

and increasing the productivity, visibility and efficiency of the NPF.

Earlier, the Director-General of NISER, Professor Antonia Simbine, stated that “global attention has shifted away from the traditional and reactive approach of policing crimes to a proactive approach, which entails the deployment of digital technology.”

Simbine said: “The issue of insecurity in the country has become a serious cause for concern with grave consequences for human safety and debilitating effect on productivity and sustained economic growth and development.”

She hoped that the ideas and strategies harvested at the seminar would enhance the formulation and implementation of a digital policing policy towards enhancing effective crime policing and the creation of a safe and clement environment for economic growth and development in Nigeria.

Other speakers and panelists at the seminar agreed that the nation would benefit immensely from deployment of digital technologies in curbing crimes and criminalities.

These include the Chairman, Police Service Commission, Mr. Solomon Ehigiator Arase, who chaired the event and the Inspector General of Police, Mr. Kayode Egbetokun, who was represented by the Commissioner of Police in Oyo State, Adebola Hamzat.  

Bearing in mind the major constraints limiting effective deployment of digital technologies across the two states surveyed, which included among others, high cost of digital policing equipment, cost of data and Internet facilities, limited number of personnel with digital technology knowledge, the study recommends putting in place a digital policing policy that will ensure commitment and prioritisation of digital initiatives to combat crime, adequate budgetary provision, regular workshops and training programmes that will intimate police officers with modern technologies for improving their work functions and addressing the identified constraints, particularly high  cost of digital equipment, infrastructural deficits and limited knowledge of digital technology.

Aside the seminar, the institute also had a Book Fair that showcased NISER publications that  cover a wide scope of subjects ranging from Agriculture and Food Policy issues, Micro and Macroeconomics, Environment and Physical Infrastructure, Human Capital, Innovation and Technology, Social Policy, as well as Political and Governance Policy.

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