The Nigeria Police Force (NPF) has called on the Federal Government to establish a special court that will facilitate the speedy trial of kidnap suspects across the country.
The Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Ibrahim Kpotum Idris who made this call at the 2017 Inspector-General of Police Public Lecture on Security held in Lagos on Friday said that the call had become necessary as there were a lot of kidnap suspects in detention nationwide.
According to him”, The Police have done very well on that, we have a lot of suspects in detention now. What I am trying to appeal to government is that we have a special court for this issue of kidnapping so that when these people are arrested, they can be taken to court and within a short time, we try them and move ahead because I believe that if judiciary is very effective and the people will see the punishment because of kidnapping, it will discourage those who are nursing ambition to go into that business.
“It seems kidnapping is now becoming attractive to the youths, you see that we are arresting many of them and the more you arrest them the more they are becoming part of the syndicate but I believe with these changes in our judicial process, having a special court, have a short period of time for them to be tried and sentenced, I believe that we are going to address the issue”.
IGP Idris urged the public to cooperate with the Nigeria Police adding that the police needed the public to succeed and that there was no way the police would succeed without the cooperation of the public.
He appealed to the National Assembly to give attention to the Police Trust Fund bill before it so as to enable the police discharge its duty effectively to Nigerians.
The police boss informed that they were going to increase their recruitment drive adding that it was obvious that for a period of six years specifically between 2010 and 2016, the force had not recruited and that it had affected the force drastically.
“I think that is where this government had done excellently well, they have recruited ten thousand policemen last year and this recruitment is going to continue so that we can increase the number of our personnel to enable us pursue effectively the principle of community policing. It can only be possible if we have more police officers that can interact with the members of the public and I believe we can be able to bridge the gap between ourselves and the community members and with that, we can be able to fulfil our obligation to the community”, he said.
On his part, the Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode pointed out that it was a common knowledge that the numerical strength of the Nigeria Police as at today fall short of the minimum requirement relative to the population of the country adding that Lagos state for instance with a population of over 22 million had less than 30,000 officers and men.
Ambode who was represented by his Deputy, Mrs. Idiat Adebule noted that while this shortfall could be bridged to some extent with deployment of appropriate technology, the need for a close relationship between the people and the police hinged on mutual respect and trust could not be over emphasized.
He said,”The unfortunate tragedies and trauma caused by the”Badoo” crime incidents in the Ikorodu area is a challenge that government has responded to with the community playing a major role in support of security agencies. The same can also be said about the menace of kidnapping which is becoming a malignant security issue. We have recorded appreciable progress in dealing with these social vices and we would not relent until these criminal phenomena and the likes are uprooted wherever they exist within the nooks and crannies of the state”.
While urging all Nigerians and stakeholders in the security sector to be the eyes and ears of government by sharing relevant and timely information with the security agencies through the various platforms available including social media, he commended the IGP, Mr. Ibrahim Idris , the Nigeria Police High Command and the rank and file for combating crime across the country.
“We are partners in the campaign to ensure security to the lives and properties of all in Nigerian and Lagos State. We also assure local and foreign investors that their investments are secure in Nigeria and in Lagos State”, Ambode stated.
Also speaking, the Managing Director of ProForce Limited, Ade Ogundeyin listed the benefits of building synergy within the security agencies to include that the populace would work and cooperate with security agencies to report crimes, suspicious movement, suspicious elements in the community; security agencies would build effective intelligence gathering as well as the achievement of a peaceful society for stable economic climate.
Ogundeyin who doubled as the Chairman of the event also listed the security challenges to include cultism such as Badoo in Ikorodu community, kidnapping, Boko Haram, crimes, theft and armed robbery.
On the solution he said,”We need to create jobs. As long as we think that oh! We kill this one, we imprisoned that one, we need to go to the root of cause of the problem and that is creating jobs. When you create jobs, you take the restless people off the streets, you will even industrialize the economy. When you industrialize, the exchange rate goes down because we are exporting, two, you will realize that you are increasing even the GDP and number three, the common man can afford what is on the street. As long as you create jobs, you take all the miscreants off the streets.
What is happening about kidnapping today is that people have seen that it is easier to make money through kidnapping than to work but we need to change that mentality in people, we need to create jobs. How do you create jobs? Buy made in Nigeria, if every single person here says, we want to buy made in Nigeria, we will create jobs and we will get these people off the streets”.
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