Calls Grow For Withdrawal Of Police Escorts From VIPs To Address Nigeria’s Security Shortfall

Date: 18-05-2024 10:08 am (1 month ago) | Author: Mister Jay Wonder
- at 18-05-2024 10:08 AM (1 month ago)

The Inspector General of Police, Kayode Egbetokun, is facing increasing pressure to withdraw police officers serving as escorts for Very Important Persons (VIPs) to enhance security across Nigeria. This comes amidst growing concerns over the insufficient number of police personnel in the country, which falls short of the United Nations' recommended ratio.

With Nigeria’s police force numbering just over 370,000, the current ratio stands at approximately one police officer for every 600 citizens, far below the ideal. This shortage exacerbates the country’s mounting security challenges.

In June 2023, during a conference with police tactical commanders in Abuja, the IGP ordered the withdrawal of Police Mobile Force personnel from VIP escort and guard duties. However, this directive did not include other police personnel, such as constables and inspectors, who continue to be assigned to VIPs.

Former National Vice Chairman of the defunct All Nigeria Peoples Party and member of the Rivers Elders’ Council, Chief Asukewe Iko-Awaji, criticized this practice in an interview with Saturday PUNCH. He argued that it significantly hampers the police force’s ability to effectively combat crime.

“I was going somewhere and saw a local government chairman with 10 policemen at his gate. Governors, senators, and House of Representatives members will take their share too. These are the police who should protect the people who voted for them. Withdraw all the police guarding politicians and let them come back and do their work. The provision that establishes the Nigerian police did not say they should leave the people to guard a few,”
Iko-Awaji stated.

Supporting this view, security expert Col. Yomi Dare suggested reducing the number of policemen assigned to VIP escorts. “Look at a situation where you have up to 12 policemen escorting one VIP. If you go to his house, he probably has another number of policemen there,” Dare noted.

As the debate continues, many Nigerians hope that reallocating police resources from VIP protection to general public security will help address the country’s urgent need for improved law enforcement.

Posted: at 18-05-2024 10:08 AM (1 month ago) | Addicted Hero
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