VP Osinbajo tasks new Acting IGP on restoring dignity of Police Force

Timothy Choji and Cyril Okonkwo, Abuja

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Nigeria’s Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo has decorated the Acting Inspector General of Police, Usman Baba with his new rank, urging him to restore the dignity of the Police.

The event took place on Wednesday in the conference room of the Vice President’s office.

Speaking after performing the decoration on behalf of President Muhammadu Buhari, Vice President Osinbajo urged the new Police boss to ensure that the Nigeria Police Force lives up to expectations and comply with the rule of law.

“The organisation you are leading is one that is itself facing several challenges, your officers work in extremely difficult conditions and some face the threat of physical harm by terrorists and hostile non-state actors while in the line of duty.

“There is no question at all that there is a lot to be done. Under your leadership, the Police must now rebuild some bridges of trust and regain the confidence of the citizens. This is an ongoing challenge and task that the Police Force and all the senior members of the Police must take on as a responsibility. They must continue to rebuild their trust with the Nigerian public.”

Community Policing

The Vice President charged the Acting Inspector General of Police to implement the Community Policing Policy which had already taken off as well as restore the dignity of the Nigeria Police.

“One of the ways you can restore confidence and build trust is by implementing the Community Policing Policy which has already taken off and reconceptualising policing as a task carried out in partnership with local communities and officers who are members of these communities.

“Under your leadership, the force must live up to all the high standards of professional conduct and compliance with the Rule of Law. It must significantly improve the welfare and working conditions of its officers while rapidly scaling up its forensic, logistical and operational capacities to meet today’s challenges.

“You must stamp out the excesses and abuses and the culture of impunity demonstrated by some elements of the force which provoked public outrage against the institution. In short, your mission is nothing less than the restoration of dignity and high repute of the policing profession and the continuous oiling of that machinery, that enables it to be one that is respected by the public and the international community,” Osinbajo advised.

He assured the new Police boss of the government’s support at all times, to reposition the Nigeria Police.

New Strategy

Speaking to State House Correspondents, soon after his decoration, Baba said he would build on the successes of his predecessor, adding that he will rejig the operational strategies of the Police.

“You will see improvement on where my predecessor has left. I came in at a very challenging time. I know it. I recognise it and I will work on how to improve from where my predecessor has left. I have been a member of the management team. We have tried to do our best, but it’s not enough. There is room for improvement. Definitely, we are going to rejig our operational strategies,” he said.

The Acting Inspector General noted that with the support of President Buhari, they will acquire new gadgets that will enhance their efficiency.

He also sued for support and cooperation from the public, to enable the Police to achieve its mandate of ensuring the safety of lives and property in all parts of the country.

“We have the blessing of Mr President and we are hoping to get more of what we have requested through the Police Trust Fund very quickly.

“Nigerians should expect improvement on the security situation. And Nigerians should also collaborate and cooperate with us. With all the inadequacies we have, we still require everybody to be part of policing in this country.

“And that is why the emphasis on community policing will continue and the emphasis of collaborating with all other sister agencies will continue and we hope to have a better situation very soon,” he assured Nigerians.

President Muhammadu Buhari had on Tuesday approved the appointment of Usman Alkali Baba as the Acting Inspector-General of Police.

Until his appointment, Mr Usman Alkali Baba was a Deputy Inspector-General, DIG of Police and will be in acting capacity pending his confirmation by the senate.

Present at the decoration ceremony were the former IGP, Mohammed Adamu, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, Boss Mustapha, the Minister of Police Affairs, Maigari Dingyadi, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu and his colleague in the office of the Vice President, Laolu Akande.

Also present was the Permanent Secretary, State House, Tijjani Umar.

PIAK

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