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Friday, 27 January 2017

OPEN LETTER TO THE INSPECTOR GENERAL OF POLICE, ON POLICE HOSTILITY, EXTORTION AND BRUTALITY

Again, I have decided to express my concerns about the increasing rate of mindless hostility, shameful extortion and dreaded brutality by men of the Nigerian police. Lest I forget, let me give accolades to a very few among your men who have distinguished themselves in their services to our fatherland but unfortunately, their diligence on their job go unnoticed and un-celebrated by the day. This is due to the huge criticism and damaging remarks from the victims of these cruelties.

Today, not only has 'OPEN' collection of bribe at check points – major bus stops, payment for bail and unlawful detention at police stations come to stay and unreported but it has become a thing of pride for the bad eggs among your men. They even go as far as ‘raiding’ innocent people returning from work and sometimes dispose them of their hard earned money and other valuables. Extortion by Policemen is aged and the victims are too many, but it can be stopped. Your men have brought so much disrepute to the Nigerian Police, so the bad eggs among them must be brought to book before it is too late.


No doubt, Nigeria would have become an admirable place for all, had the mindless hostility and dreaded brutality by your men be on criminals and law defaulters but unfortunately their cruelties are on innocent tax payers who engage in lawful businesses and respect the rule of law. In-arguably, the aforementioned acts seem to have become embedded in the psyche of an average policeman whose desire for luxury is mind disturbing and have eventually got the number of bad eggs among your men to ‘cube square’ those who ‘serve and protect with integrity’.

Sad, the senior officers among your men are products of these shameful reactants, and tend to encourage these among junior officers, all because a certain percentage of the ill gotten money also stops at their offices. It is no news that some mindless DPOs in the NPF are fond of replacing criminals in their custody with innocent people ‘raided’ on the streets, in exchange for huge sums of money. Sir, the cruelty of your men have resulted to an increased crime rate, loss of so many lives and property, and left so many innocent people handicapped.

As a frantic opinion writer, it is pertinent for me to tell the other side of every story, in a curative manner that is devoid of sentiments and self aggrandizement. In affirmative of the aforesaid, let me say that the 'rotten state' of the NPF is an indication of a successive failed leadership, mindless corruption, crass impunity and a lack of political will to end this mess in the NPF. The plague in the NPF is curable and discipline can still be instilled in your men, only and only if your leadership can embark on a well funded strategic orientation and reorientation of your men, prosecute and get rid of the hardened bad eggs to a minimum and provide sustainable benefits and build confidence in the good ones.

Sir, it is time to stop the ‘mental slavery’ among your men, it is pertinent to stop attaching your men as drivers to public office holders, hand bag carriers and maids to the wives of the rich. The time to stop your men from harassing other road users with their vans is now, the time to end selective arrest of offenders is now. Policeman should not be seen as friends to criminals, but rather they should be friends to law abiding citizens.

In conclusion, let me say that the approach to restoring sanity and sanctity in the Nigeria police can not be achieved, if the salaries and other allowances of your men still get delayed or shortened by their senior colleagues, if your men are denied a conducive living environment and other benefits, if your men are denied of their training and retraining allowances, if their gratuities and pensions are being siphoned by their senior colleagues. So, it is very important for your office to also look into the rots among the ranks and files of the NPF, if your leadership desire to leave good legacies and is sincere with the much talked about ‘change begins with me’ slogan.

AGAIN, I CAN ONLY EMPATHIZE WITH ALL VICTIMS OF POLICE HOSTILITY AND BRUTALITY, BECAUSE WHO DO YOU CALL WHEN YOU ARE BEING BRUTALIZED BY THE POLICE.

Sad, it is "POLICE EVERYWHERE, JUSTICE NOWHERE".

I see hope!

Thank you.

Sulaiman Kazeem
27 Jan, 2017.
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