By Victor Adeoti
Gov. Rauf Aregbesola of Osun, has called for the decentralisation of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) through proper restructuring and reform.
The governor made the call on Sunday in Osogbo when a Deputy Inspector- General of Police, Mr Foluso Adebanjo paid him a courtesy visit.
He said decentralisation of the force would ensure effective zonal security management, control and operation.
Aregbesola said Nigeria had grown beyond centralised policing, saying that devolution of policing powers must be encouraged for greater productivity and discipline.
“I am a strong advocate of federalisation of Police Force.
“We need to devolve the control of Police in such a way that the cumbersome responsibility shouldered by the Inspector General of Police would be reduced.
“Since the first obligation and responsibility of government remains security and maintenance of law and order, therefore, it behoves on any serious government to prioritise and guarantee the security of lives and property of the citizenry.
“It is a misnomer in a society like Nigeria for Commissioner of Police in a state to be directly answerable to Inspector General of Police in spite of the fact that there is Zonal Assistant Inspector General of Police in the zone to which such state emanates.
“Ideally, CP should be answerable to zonal commander who is AIG, while AIG become responsible to IG.
“This will sanitise the system and instill the spirit of commitment and dedication into the system.
“There is need to federate Police Force. Police must restructure its structure in such a way that it would enhance effective zonal structure and management.”
Earlier in his remarks, DIG Adebanjo commended the governor for making Osun one of the states with the lowest crime rate in Nigeria.
Adebanjo also lauded Osun Government for giving the force necessary support and cooperation in its bid to maintain law and order.
“Let me add to it, Osun has one of the lowest crime rates in Nigeria. We cherish this feat and we know that the tempo would be sustained.
“We have been monitoring events in the state even from Abuja and we know that the state has never relented in its efforts of security consciousness.
“On our part, we shall continue to live up to expectation of Nigerian people in ensuring a safe atmosphere for all to live in.
”We will not rest on our oars to ensure that our nation is free from crimes of all nature,” the DIG said.