In its conscious effort to rid the Nigerian police force of corrupt elements whose conducts keep bringing the image of the police to disrepute, the Nigerian police force under the leadership of the Inspector General of Police, Usman Alkali Baba is leaving no stone unturned in ridding the force of corrupt officers.
Expressing grave disappointment at the reports of brutality and extortion levelled against some police officers via various complaint channels available to the public, particularly on social media platforms, the Inspector-General of Police, IGP Usman Alkali Baba has directed all supervising Commissioners of Police and Tactical/Strategic Commanders to ensure strict supervision of their personnel as further incidences of this nature would be viewed strictly.”
The IGP has also ordered a wholistic overhauling of the Intelligence Response Team (IRT), the Special Tactical Squad (STS), and the Special Weapon and Tactics (SWAT) Units to ensure that their operations are in tandem with the purpose for their creation, and maximum effectiveness and output in line with the mandate of the IGP’s administration and public safety.
Alkali Baba also directed the Assistant Inspector-General of Police in charge of the Force Intelligence Bureau (AIG-FIB) to carry out a supervisory role over the three units to ensure their operations are professional, active, and productive and do not infringe on the fundamental rights of the citizenry, and other members of the public.”
The efforts to restore sanity within its officers and men can be seen in the recent dismissal of some officers involved in discipline, brutality, and extortion.
Consequently, PC Liyomo Okoi with No. 524503 PC was on Monday dismissed from the Nigerian police force.
PC Liyomo Okoi attached to Ekori Divisional Headquarters, Cross Rivers Police Command was dismissed for gross misconduct captured in a viral video on 31st July 2022 where he was flogging a man with a machete. His dismissal took effect from the 8th of August, 2022.
Also, inspector, Richard Gele, who was caught in a viral video “dignifying and justifying” the extortion of members of the public was decently dismissed.
“The Inspector, with AP/No. 188547, who until his dismissal, was attached to Police Mobile Force 77 Squadron, Okene, Kogi State and deployed to the Itobe – Anyigba Road, for the safety of road users and commuters, along the route, where the incident occurred.
“The dismissed Inspector who hails from Benue State enlisted into the Force in September 2000.
According to the Force spokesperson, Olumuyiwa Adejobi, “his dismissal came after subjection to the internal disciplinary mechanism and being found wanting of the charges levelled against him in line with extant laws governing the conduct of police personnel. He, therefore, ceases to be a member of the Nigeria Police Force with immediate effect. The officer has been de-kitted and handed over to the Commissioner of Police, Kogi State, for further necessary action.”
Reiterating his commitment to bequeathing policing standards in tandem with international best practices to the nation, the Inspector-General of Police, Alkali Baba warned all personnel to eschew extortion, unprofessionalism, and official corruption, and other inappropriate acts. The IGP urged them to display exemplary courage and patriotism in the discharge of their duties.”
Alkali Baba also expressed confidence that the current overhauling will improve the effectiveness of the units, and rid them of negative elements who deviate from the standard operating procedure of the Units, and the Nigeria Police Force in general.”
Following the footsteps of the IGP Usman Alkali Baba, the Lagos State Police Command is sparing no rod to discipline those caught in acts of unprofessionalism. Several police officers found wanting have been subjected to orderly room trial by the provost Unit of the Command. Recently two officers officer, serving in Dolphin Division who were caught on video shows assaulting a victim were handed over to the Provost for disciplinary action, pending their transfer to FHQ Abuja for further disciplinary measures.
Commending the proactive measures taken by IGP to tackle corrupt practices within the force, Human rights activist, and Executive director RULAC, Okechukwu Nwanguma said in recent times there has been a rise in the number of reported cases of police officers caught on video by vigilant citizens molesting, harassing, intimidating or brutalising citizens in a bid to extort money from people, usually at checkpoints. Many of such spectacles have been exposed through social media. Whether this is a rise in the frequency of such incidents or an increase in citizens’ awareness to record and report police misconduct remains to be ascertained through a survey. But what is not in doubt is the readiness and promptness with which police authorities have responded to such embarrassing reports when brought to their attention.
In the past one month alone, no less than four such cases have been reported where police officers involved in corrupt practices and misconduct are arrested, tried in Orderly Room, and dismissed. This is a clear demonstration by the NPF of its renewed determination to entrench discipline and accountability and to stamp out impunity for abuse of police powers. It is also a demonstration of the power and usefulness of the positive use of social media by vigilant citizens. I commend the NPF. Social media is doing well to expose Police crimes across states.
The NPF is sparing no rod to discipline those caught. Accountability is key to rooting out impunity. Officers who stand out in conduct should as well be rewarded, to balance the equation.”