Recruitment of 30,000 Policemen
THE Nigeria Police Force (NPF) began the recruitment of 30,000 police officers on January 8, 2024. The recruitment is for the ranks of Police Constable in the General Duty and Specialist. We commend the Federal Government for the initiative and approval as Nigeria population is so vast, such that it needs effective manpower to police the society. The 30,000 is huge. Each of the 36 states of the federation will now have additional 800 to 850 men to police it. This will help in distributing men, the rank and file in the police, as personnel is one of the challenges of effective policing in Nigeria.
ENGAGING policemen has two stages: recruitment, which is the process of enlisting new candidates; and selection, the act of screening and hiring candidates. The Hope advises that the Nigeria Police should move beyond just recruiting, but look more into the process of ensuring the recruitment is sanitised. The Force should move away from recruiting every Dick, Tom and Harry, but adopt the recruitment process of the Directorate of State Services (DSS), which looks out for first class and recruits well trained and intelligent officers. It should compare the population of the country with the number of policemen to know if they are capable of policing the country. Background checks is necessary which every candidate must pass while they meet major criteria to properly fit into the system. This will checkmate the influx of wolves and external enemies under the disguise of loyal citizens.
ANOTHER area we must pursue very quickly is that of state police, which we believe will make policing every nook and cranny effective. We emphasise the need for state police, as those to do the job must be knowledgeable about the environment and be familiar with the terrain. Federal Government alone cannot recruit police. So, it is imperative states should be empowered through constitutional amendment to hire. It will enable the agency know the pedigree of the men to be recruited. Therefore, it is high time Nigeria looked into the Constitution review of the Police Force as the one initiated by former President Mohammadu Buhari did not scale through.
NO doubt, the world is now a global village and up to date training is very essential in all sectors, especially in security. There is also the need for training and retraining in the police force. The candidates must be trained in intelligence gathering as the bandits are now 21st century compliant. They should be provided with modern technological equipment, gadgets, security apparatus and sophisticated weapons than those displayed by the criminals and bandits and to be abreast of the latest technological devises .
RECALLED that a former IGP, Adamu Mohammed said officers in the Nigeria Police Force do not have the required logistics needed to operate. And that they struggle to make the society peaceful. According to him, “If you put Nigerian police officers side by side with even police officers from advanced countries, give them the same logistics, you will see Nigeria police officers performing better than those from the so-called advanced countries”.
ANOTHER issue of concern is the inter-rivalry between the police and other security agencies. In recent times, there have been face-offs between the police and most especially, the men of the Nigerian Army. This act, we note, is anti-nationalistic and should be stopped. Our security agencies should not work in isolation, but in unity for the purpose of securing lives and property of the citizenry and there must be mutual respect for one another.
ABOVE all, good leadership is very essential in the Nigeria Police Force, ranging from the top to the bottom. Recently, the Chairman of the Police Service Commission, Solomon Arase, raised an eyebrow at special police units’ involvement in unethical behaviors, such as barefaced extortion, highhandedness in dealing with citizens, including unprofessional conduct by officers of the outfit, a quasi-police formation created to assist in community policing, thereby tarnishing the reputation of the Nigeria Police Force. He also called for a complete overhaul, disbandment, or the introduction of a distinct uniform for the Special Police Constabulary.
THE Hope reiterates the need for good leadership in the Nigeria Police Force, to set good examples for their men, both the ranks and files to follow suit. Leaders in various Commands, Areas and Divisions should be transparent and involved in the fight against bribery and corruption while the bad eggs within the Force should either be punished or laid off.