The Inspector-General of Police, Muhammed Adamu, and the South-East governors will on Wednesday meet in Enugu, the Enugu State capital, over the Federal Government’s community policing policy.
The Force Public Relations Officer, Frank Mba, who disclosed this in an interview with one of our correspondents on Monday, said the IG would be attending a security summit with the South-East governors as part of a nationwide mobilisation towards the community policing policy.
The meeting is coming three days after the South-East governors, the Igbo apex socio-cultural organisation, the Ohanaeze Ndigbo, and prominent Igbo leaders met on the insecurity in the country, in Enugu.
Before the meeting attended by the governors and the Ohanaeze Ndigbo leaders at the Enugu State Government House on Sunday, the Ohanaeze Ndigbo at another meeting earlier in the day said it would do everything to defend its people.
At the Enugu State Government House meeting, the South-East governors urged the houses of assembly in the zone to make laws that would pave the way for the establishment of a security outfit for the region.
But the Force Public Relations Officer, Mba, told The PUNCH that the police had begun the process of screening and recruiting constables for community policing.
Recall that the IG, had in a wireless message to state commissioners of police, directed them to liaise with community leaders and traditional rulers with a view to setting up committees for recruiting the constables.
We have started recruitment for community policing – Force PRO
Mba in his response to enquiries by The PUNCH, said, “We have processes being put on the ground. We are already implementing. We are already recruiting. We are in the process of recruiting the special constables. Some commands have begun the screening processes. The IG is also concluding a nationwide sensitization and consultation process which began last year. We are concluding on Wednesday in Enugu State.
“The IG will be attending the South-East security summit taking place in Enugu on Wednesday and if you recall, you will remember that such similar security summits had been successfully held in the North-West geopolitical zone in Katsina State; in the North-East in Borno State; South-West in Oyo State; South-South in Delta; North-Central in Nasarawa; and the last leg is the South-East, which is happening in Enugu.
“That will be a final nationwide sensitisation and consultation and mobilization process. And that process is designed to mobilise the key stakeholders and partners on what the community policing process and try to explain the processes to them. It is also an avenue to get feedback and platforms for opportunities available through the political stakeholders and persons of interest in each geo-political zones to raise their issues and queries of concern on the implementation of that process.
“That is the final process and the final summit will be held in Enugu. It is an ongoing process and we have substantially got the full buy-in and support of the Federal Government and we have also got the support of the bulk of the governors, the National Assembly and other strategic stakeholders and partners.”
When asked how many had been recruited so far, Mba said, “I don’t have the figure but you know we have a fixed number which will be recruited from each local government area and that is the standard.”
Killings, kidnapping have taken centre stage in Delta – Okowa
In a related development, the Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, has called on police to recruit more men and procure more gadgets to track criminals.
Okowa, who stated this through his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Olise Ifeajika, noted killings and kidnapping had taken a centre stage in the state.
He said, “It is obvious that Governor Okowa in any forum not just meeting with the senators will demand the police to do more because we cannot go out and begin to police ourselves. It is the responsibility of the police to protect its citizens.
“Killings and kidnapping have taken the centre stage in Delta. They should do more. It means procuring more gadgets to track criminals.”
On his part, the Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, said that his demand from any meeting with the Federal Government would be the creation of state police as a long-term solution to the security problems of the country.
The governor, who spoke through his Chief Press Secretary, Terver Akase, said that he was in full support of community policing. He, however, said that the creation of state police was a long term solution to insecurity.