Following President Muhammadu Buhari’s directive that the over 130, 000 police personnel attached to unauthorized persons and VIPs in the country, be withdrawn and deployed to confront the serious security challenges in the nation, Force headquarters in conjunction with the Police Service Commission is set to commence the implementation.
Consequently, the Police Service Commission, PSC, in collaboration with the Inspector General Police, has concluded arrangements to deploy a high level monitoring team to the nation’s Airports, Highways and other public places to enforce the presidential directive of immediate withdrawal of Policemen from Very Important Personalities (VIP) who are not entitled to their services.
Chairman of the Police Service Commission, Sir Mike Mbama Okiro, (IGP rtd) who confirmed this in Abuja Tuesday, disclosed that “the monitoring team will have the powers to stop VIPs’ on the highways, Airports etc, for confirmation of their status and that of the Policemen attached to them”.
A statement signed by Ikechukwu Ani, head of information PSC, quotes Okiro warning that “Any erring VIP or Policeman caught in such unauthorized beat, will be prosecuted”.
The PSC Chairman insisted that “the Commission and the leadership of the Nigeria Police Force will enforce the presidential directive to the letter, stressing that henceforth only authorized government officials and VIPs’ will be entitled to Police security.
Continuing, Okiro noted that the nation cannot be battling with an inadequate Police Force while majority of these scarce officers are in the service of few privileged Nigerians who ordinarily should have no need for them.
He said the Nigeria Police will now be “structured to do its primary duties of providing internal security and protecting lives and property” adding that “the Commission will give the leadership of the Nigeria Police Force the required support and encouragement to enhance its efficiency and effectiveness”.
Okiro further warned that the Commission will not hesitate to discipline any Police Officer who flouts the presidential directive by hanging onto these VIPs’ for pecuniary gains.
“We cannot afford to have more than half of the population of the Police in private hands,” he said.