By Usiere Akpan
The Federal government has recruited not fewer than 40,000 police personnel in the last four years in the country.
Consequently, President Muhammadu Buhari and Gov. Udom Emmanuel have tasked the Nigeria Police Force to double up efforts with other security agencies to end internal security challenges in the country.
The duo made the remarks during the annual retreat and conference for senior police officers, which took place at the Ibom Icon and Golf Resort, Uyo, Tuesday.
Buhari specifically said that his administration was committed to the implementation of reforms to boost the morale and capacity of the force, adding that the initiative, in the interest of the police, would be by adequate funding and recruitment of more personnel in the system to fight crime and maintain peace.
Mr. President, who was represented by the minister of police affairs, Alhaji Mohammed Dingyadi, said that his administration recognises the role of the police as critical to the advancement of the economy and the growth of democracy in the country, stressing that more than enough demonstration would continue to be undertaken in the resolveto strengthen the capacity of the police for crime fighting in the country.
He stated that the retreat was significant to bring out renewed strategies of dissecting challenges of internal security in the country, urging officers and men of the Nigeria Police Force to live up to expectations in combating internal security.
He announced that the Federal Government has made impacts in police reforms by giving legal backing to community policing, by strengthening local securityframework in effective policing of communities, adding that far-reaching reforms have been made with the introduction of the need assessment policy on areas of needs as well as internal budgeting to address core challenges.
Emmanuel, watched by his colleague in Ekiti, Dr Kayode Fayemi, said that the retreat was timely to address lapses seen in the use of age-long approaches to combat crime in the country, and lamented widespread security threats facing the country, hinting that it was expedient to tackle security problems before the coming general elections in the country.
The governor said that the time was right for the implementation of security measures by setting proper structures, sharing values and adopting new styles rather than professing on strategies in the country, remarking that his administration has been proactive in complementing the Federal Government efforts at tackling insecurity in the country.
He stated that it was also ideal to tackle insecurity by looking at the root causes from the perspectives of unemployment and hopelessness among the youths, hoping that the array of resource persons selected to handle different segments of the retreat would come up with solid recommendations of returning the society to the path of peace.
The IGP, Alkali Baba, explained that the forum became necessary to generate new ideas on how to properly reposition the force in line with contemporary intelligence-led policing in the country, hinting that it was a 2-day event occupying strategic importance in the Nigeria Police Force.
Baba mentioned that the retreat would serve the forum to review and reassess the capacity of the police to combat internal security threats, commending President Buhari’s administration for the commitment to repositioning the force in the country.
The IGP added that the retreat would be utilized to relook atthe missions and visions of the police, maintaining that a holistic evaluation of strategies would be learnt to identify the way forward, while appreciating the Akwa Ibom government for the warm hosting of the event.