BY Femi Owolabi
Mohammed Adamu, inspector-general of police (IGP), says the police need 2 million teargas canisters, 1,000 tracking devices, 1,000 armoured personnel carriers (APC) and 250,000 assault rifles with corresponding ammunition to effectively fight insecurity.
The IGP, according to PUNCH, disclosed this on Tuesday at a public hearing organised by the house of representatives committee on police affairs.
Adamu, who was represented by Abdulmajid Ali, deputy inspector-general of police in charge of operations, said these equipment are needed to fight insurgency and cyber crimes.
“Not less than 1,000 APCs, 250,000 assault rifles/corresponding ammunition, 2,000,000 tear gas canisters/smoke grenades 200,000 riot gunners and smoke pistols, 1,000 tracking devices, 774 operational drones, among others, (are needed) to cover the length and breadth of the nation,” he was quoted to have said.
He said in repositioning the police, there is the need to review the policing strategy.
“This informs the approval and adoption of community policing as the national strategy for internal security management in Nigeria,” he was quoted as saying.
“The community policing model being envisioned for Nigeria is one that will draw on the legal opportunities provided by the police act for the engagement of special constables who, in this instance, will be engaged as community policing officers under the coordination of the Nigeria police towards evolving a community-focused policing architecture.
“When fully operational, the strategy will free up the human and material assets of the Nigeria police, which are currently tied down to the management of low level crimes, and strengthen our capacity to redirect our assets and operations to high-profile crimes that constitute major threat to community safety and security.”
The IGP said some of the “best hands” refused to join the police because of poor remuneration.
Making comparison, he said a Kenyan police constable take-home earning is about 34,907 shilling or N126,000, whereas his Nigerian counterpart earns less than N50,000.
“Pitiably, this earning comes down to between N12,000 and N18,000 at retirement,” he said.
He added that a comparative analysis between Nigeria and South Africa police indicates that while in 2018 the South African police got R46.87bn rand or N1.1372 trillion for visible policing programme, with a 6.89 per cent growth projection up to 2021/2022 financial year, the Nigeria Police had to do with N35 billion appropriation and an eventual release of N20 billion for capital and overhead expenditure.