The Inspector- General of Police, Mr Ibrahim Idris, says the force will establish special tracking unit in Lagos and Port-Harcourt to check kidnapping and other crimes.
Idris made this known when he was interacting with civil society groups and crime reporters in Lagos on Friday.
He noted that kidnapping was becoming more serious than other crimes in the country.
The IG said that the tracking machine established in Abuja had helped to resolve about 90 per cent cases of kidnapping with victims rescued and suspects arrested.
”Already, tracking machines have been deployed to states and will start functioning in few weeks’ time, so as to reduce pressure on those in Abuja.
”This will enhance the police anti-kidnapping drive.
”The machine in Port Harcourt, Rivers will cater for the South-South and South East zones, while the one deployed to Lagos would focus on the west,” he said.
The police chief also said that there were plans to reinvigorate the force forensic laboratories, noting however, that funds constraints were hindering its implementation.
Idris urged Nigerians to assist the police in tackling armed crimes, reiterating that the fight against kidnappers was a community fight.
According to him, it is not what the police alone can handle. It has become a community fight and can only be solved with the help of the people.
“When I assumed duty, one of the plans we came up with was to rehabilitate our forensic units. I outlined the challenges of the police and how to handle them.
”The thing is that we have been having funding challenges.
“We are trying to address it in a holistic manner. Very soon, we are going to have National Security Summit. Kidnapping seems to be a community problem.
“Over 90 percent of victims have been rescued. I agree that it is becoming a major challenge. It cuts across the entire country. It has to be addressed in various forms.
“It is not just the police or security agencies. Take for instance where the Turkish School students were kidnapped. That school is situated at the foot of a swamp.
”Despite that parents pay huge amount of money, the school did not invest much in security.
“So, we are going to use the summit to address these issues as well as others like the herdsmen and farmers issues.
”These issues are further dividing us as a nation and we need to solve them.
You cannot have the maximum support of security in an area without the support of the public.
”Everybody has one thing or the other to make our society safe,” Idris said.
He expressed the need for the media and civil society to be advocates of improved funding for the police through the Police Trust Fund.
“The funding of the police is costly. What we are trying to do is to pursue 50 percent of our budgetary requirement from other sources.
”We are also looking for other avenues where we can address the problem of the police.
“At the same time, we are hoping that the National Assembly will pass the bill establishing Police Trust Fund, by so doing, open up other sources for the police to generate money.
”It is already happening in Lagos (Security Trust Fund) and has been working wonderfully.
“We are aware that the Federal Government is financially constrained and so, we do not think it is right to over burden the system by creating other agencies.
”These agencies would require funding and create rivalry. But if more money is available for the police and more people recruited, we can achieve so much more,” he noted.
Idris also stated that there were plans to professionalise the police by establishing specialised schools such as Finance, Marine, among others for training.
He urged civil society organisations to support the police in training its personnel on professional conducts.
The IG expressed satisfaction at the scorecard of the rebranded Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).
“We are working hard to restore the integrity of the police. Earning the confidence of the people is important to us and we can only achieve that by changing the attitude of some of our policemen.
”By the time we achieve that, the people’s trust will be regained and things will be better.
“This is one of the reasons we make it compulsory for officers from the rank of Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) and above to declare their assets.
”My management team and I declared our assets when we came on board,” he said.
On the strength of the police, Idris said that the service was understaffed and would need over a million policemen to meet United Nations standard.
”Thankfully, the government has given approval for yearly recruitment of 10,000 policemen. For so many years, there was embargo on police recruitment.
“Besides, the police lost so many personnel in the course of the Boko Haram insurgency. We were the worst hit and still we were not recruiting.
”All these affected the strength of the police,” the police chief said.
He revealed that of the N300 billion budgeted for the police in 2016, only N4 billion was eventually released.
#EndSARS: Ekiti state government declares 24-hour curfew
Following the various attacks on #EndSARS protesters in the state, Governor Kayode Fayemi has imposed a 24-hour curfew on the state effective from 10pm on today, Tuesday, October 20.
In a statement released by the Secretary to the State Government, Biodun Oyebanji, the state government said the curfew became necessary following the state government’s observation of how the end SARS protest, which started as a peaceful protest against police brutality by youths in Ekiti State, has been hijacked by some hoodlums.
Read the statement below
1. The Government of Ekiti State has observed with growing concern how the ENDSARS protest, which started as a peaceful protest against police brutality by youths in Ekiti State, has been hijacked by some hoodlums.
2. The hoodlums have capitalised on the ENDSARS protest to rape, assault, rob and extort innocent citizens across the State. These are in addition to the wanton destruction of properties, particularly private properties.
3. Government is concerned that if this state of affairs is allowed to continue unabated, it will lead to a breakdown of law and order thereby threatening the wellbeing of the people of Ekiti State.
4. For the purpose of clarity Government continues to show understanding and responsiveness to the demands of the legitimate protesters.
5. On 16th October 2020, Dr. John Kayode Fayemi, Governor, Ekiti State met with the protesters in person. While identifying with the legitimacy of their protests, he assured them that the State Government will immediately put measures in place to respond to all their demands.
6. Government has since then constituted a Human Rights Investigation Panel to review all cases of abuse by Officers of the disbanded SARS. In addition, Government has enabled a Victims Compensation Fund to facilitate speedy remedial measures for victims of such abuse.
7. Furthermore, several officials of Government have engaged the protesters at multiple fora and platforms including the social media in order to ensure that concerns of protesters are properly identified and responded to in a prompt and efficient manner with necessary feedback.
8. Government had also at various times drawn the attention of the protesters to the troubling hijack of the protests by individuals whose only interest is to inflict violence on the people of the state.
9. In the past 48 hours there have been incidents of gang-rape, robberies, physical assaults on innocent people, looting and burning of a police station. These acts of brigandage are not in consonance with the legitimate aspirations of the protesters. It cannot be logical to seek to remedy impunity with impunity.
10. Government therefore cannot afford to watch a deliberate enthronement of anarchy by some bad elements who have hijacked the protest for some clandestine reasons.
11. Consequently, the Governor of Ekiti State, Dr Kayode Fayemi, hereby imposes a 24-hour curfew on all parts of the State starting from 10.00 pm tonight, Tuesday, October, 20, 2020.
12. Only essential workers and service providers with valid means of identifications are allowed to move around during the period of the curfew.
13. Any person found on the street that does not belong to this category, would be promptly arrested and prosecuted according to the laws of Ekiti State.
14. We seek the understanding of the good people of Ekiti State as we continue to take deliberate steps towards ensuring that peace and normalcy return to our state.”
Davido speaks on the events of the past 48 hours
Nigerian superstar, Davido has said criminals are responsible for the attack on two Correctional Centres in Benin City, Edo State.
Davido made the claim while absolving End SARS protesters of involvement in the attacks.
The singer pointed out that no amount of mischief would stop the protest against police brutality and bad governance.
Davido made the remark while condemning the attack on two Correctional Centres in Benin City, Edo State.
The hoodlums had attacked the facilities and freed some inmates.
Reacting, the singer in a series of tweets wrote: “After seeing all that’s gone on today I just want to say that from the beginning we have preached that the protest must remain peaceful and Law Abiding and as far as I know we have kept to that! And we will continue to keep to that so the narrative can NOT be switched up on us!
“The people they claim broke into prisons to free convicted criminals, burn police stations to steal weapons, damage police, government, and private vehicles are Criminals and everybody must condemn these acts. They are not part of our movement !
“#EndSars is a peaceful and law abiding protest that is going somewhere great! And no mischief can scatter it!”
Address Nigerians over #EndSARS protests – Senate urges Buhari
The Nigerian Senate has called on President Buhari to urgently address the nation so as to douse the tension in the country.
This comes as hoodlums continue to carry out various attacks on #EndSARS protesters and others in some parts of the country.
The Senators made the call for President Buhari to speak to the Nation after a motion was moved by Senator Biodun Olujimi and co-sponsored by all Senators on the ongoing nationwide protests believed to have been hijacked by hoodlums.
Part of the resolution of the Senators after deliberation include:
-Urge all tiers of government to put in place and sustain policies of social economic reforms that raise the standard of lives of our people;
-Call upon the Police to operate strictly in accordance with the rules of engagement appropriate in a democratic environment;
-Urge the Inspector General of Police to ensure a holistic comprehensive reforms of the police to increase the overall welfare including training and medical insurance of all members of the Nigeria Police Force
-Appeal to all Nigerians to resort to use of legal institutions to resolve disputes and conflicts;
-Urge the Nigerian youths and the Nigerian citizens to approach the National Assembly Committees Constitution and Reforms in order to secure far-reaching holistic amendments that are vital to the restructuring of our federation
-Urge the Federal Government to faithfully and comprehensively implement all the five demands of the #EndSARS movement and protesters with necessary timelines to rekindle confidence in government
-Appeal to #EndSARS movement and protesters to kindly in the interest of everyone stop their actions and embrace genuine dialogue; 7. Urge Mr. President to address the nation as soon as possible on these issues.
-Police should make it a duty to accompany protesters and should be involved in protecting genuine protesters.
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