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400,000 Policemen Inadequate To Secure Nigeria’s Huge Population – Abbas




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Speaker of the House of Representatives, Tajudeen Abbas, argues that 400,000 police officers in Nigeria are insufficient to protect the country’s 200 million citizens.

Speaking on Thursday during a courtesy call by the Association of Clerks of State Houses of Assembly, Abbas—who was represented by the House’s Deputy Speaker, Benjamin Okezie Kalu stated that the establishment of state police was essential.

Naija News reports that he said state policing would increase internal security because the operators were already more familiar with the terrain than the police.

The creation of the state police, according to Abbas, is similar to the changes made by the 9th National Assembly to the railway and power industries, among other things, so that the states could utilize certain constitutional rights under the concurrent list.

He said, “On other key nationally important matters like state police, for example, the House recognizes the diverse perspectives and needs across different states.

“We believe that through constructive dialogue and a willingness to find common ground, we can arrive at solutions that truly serves the best interests of all Nigerians.

“Talking about state police, you will remember also that we did something with the Correctional Services. These are issues that ordinarily fall into the exclusive list of the Constitution of the federal of republic of Nigeria which you had no business tampering with.

“But in the spirit of true federalism, the 9th and 10th Assemblies are determined to bring some of these for better governance, to take it from the exclusive list to the concurrent list. We did that with the railway and power in the 9th Assembly. The question is, how many of the states have drafted laws, domesticating that in their state?

“Now, the state police is here. We want to use the legislative intervention to improve the needs in our society. One of our needs is security. And we have tried the one layer police system and they overwhelmed us.

“The truth remains that 400, 000 policemen, policing over 200 million people can never give you the expected security. It is not even in line with the international best practices on police per citizen policing.

“How do we make it trickle down and achieve what we are looking for. Imagine a brother of mine trained in Sokoto or Kaduna during his training as a policeman and he finished and was sent to Bayelsa, a riverine area where the culture is different, language is different, even the way of movement is different -they use mainly boats and this our brother has a phobia for water, how do you expect him to police the people who swim?

“The policing will not be thorough. But take a man from that community who knows the in and out of the geography of the area, train him around that place, send him to police, you will agree with me that he will police better. The same thing if you take my brother from Bayelsa to Sokoto, he will not police better than the Sokoto man.

“Yet, the spirit of one nation, national integration, federal character is key and cannot be tampered with. That is why the federal police can have the coloration of what it is at the moment.

“And another thing is, if we don’t streamline it, you will see pockets of organizations, vigilante groups springing up everyday, getting armed everyday. If tomorrow we are not able to manage them in line with the core principle of policing, we may end up creating monsters that will add to insecurity.”