The Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Usman Alkali Baba, has warned police officers in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) not to employ crime prevention tactics such as roadblocks and searches for extortion.
Baba gave this warning to Divisional Police Officers (DPOs), Area Commanders, and Police Tactical Teams during a one-day duty tour in Abuja at FCT Command, stating that their roles as security agents should not create difficult situations for road users and other law-abiding individuals.
He said, “We must ensure that they serve the purpose for which they are deployed. Don’t raid because you want to detain people and begin to ask for bail. Don’t be on the road doing stop and search because you want to create a difficult situation for road users so that you can extort.
“Whatever crime prevention measure you want to adopt, you must use it effectively and with the fear of God. The job of policing belongs to everybody and we must all come together to cooperate and synergise if we must police our communities effectively.
“Police, as a lead agency in internal security, must exploit this area of collaboration with the people. The space is wide, there is no need for rivalry or to outsmart others because every security agency, including the police, are working to checkmate the activities of criminals.”
The Commissioner of Police, Sunday Babaji, in charge of the FCT, stated that the command had developed and implemented operational policies and strategies aimed at combating crime and criminality, noting that the operational policies and strategies were in accordance with the IGP’s vision and mission.
However, he emphasised that the command faces serious obstacles such as a lack of manpower, limited barrack lodging for officers and troops, insufficient patrol cars, trackers, drones, Tear Gas Smoke, rifles, and ammunition.
To function successfully, he claims, the command requires 10 armored personnel carriers, 15 Toyota Hilux, 40 motorcycles, bulletproof jackets/ballistic helmets, and 1,500 walkie-talkies.