INSURGENCY: Buhari Orders Equipment for Police to secure recovered territories in North East.
Following his directive that the Boko Haram insurgency in the North East be brought to an end by December this year, President Muhammadu Buhari has ordered the procurement of arms and equipment for the Nigeria Police Force to enable its officers and men move into and secure communities and towns recaptured or liberated from the terrorists by the military.
Towards this end, Inspector General of Police, Solomon Arase while who summoned Mopol Squadron Commanders to Force headquarters urged his men to get ready to carry out the President’s order towards curbing terrorism in the Northeast.
He words, “I can authoritatively tell you that the President has actually ordered us to get equipment that we need to move into the Northeast and not just moving into the Northeast with our bare hands”.
“I am talking about the necessary things that we actually need for our officers to perform and that is why I can authoritatively convoke this meeting with our operational arm of the Nigeria Police Force to tell them that they should get ready and that once we have these equipment, we are going to roll in and ensure that civil authority is restored in those areas.
On the governorship elections coming up in Kogi and Bayelsa States, the IGP vowed to visit the full weight of the law on any politician who attempts to compromise the electoral process during the elections.
He made the vow even as he said President Muhammadu Buhari never gave the Police any directive to ensure that the governorship elections in the states are compromised as alleged by the PDP.
Kogi election is slated for 21st November, 2015 while Bayelsa is scheduled for 5th December, 2015.
Speaking further, the IGP said, “We are at the threshold of another election in Kogi and Bayelsa States scheduled to hold on 21 November, 2015 and 5th December, 2015 respectively. Our resolve and competence will once again be tested in this onerous assignment and we cannot afford to fail.
“As we drive the process, let me warn that any person that attempts to test the will of the Force by engaging in any act that negates the electoral law or engages in any crime with intent to derail or compromise the integrity of the exercise will be isolated and firmly dealt with.
Continuing the IGP said: “Anybody and politician who thinks that they can use the police to win election, I think they have a second thinking coming. They have to go to the field and go and contest, win the hearts and minds of the electorates.
“My own job is very easy, I am to provide a level playing field, emplace a robust security architecture that nobody will be able to test and I just mentioned it in my address, any politician who tests my will, will be severely dealt with, they will be amputated, I can assure you that.
The Police chief also warned his officers and other security agencies that will be deployed to complement the Police to situate their operations within the professional ethics stating that any personnel found to be engaged in any act demeaning of their official callings will be similarly dealt with.
According to him: “I have also told my officers that if they make themselves available for any politician to use them and assault the electoral process, then severe disciplinary measures will be taken against you. The era of those things are already past, we are professional security managers and that is exactly what we are going to do.
On the commitment of the President to ensure a credible election, the IGP said, “I can assure you that the president has not given us any order to compromise the result of the elections that will be conducted in the two states, instead, he has insisted that we must go and ensure that credible elections are conducted wherever it is going to be conducted and he repeatedly said it that he has been a victim of electoral manipulation and he cannot see himself now in this position supporting the same thing that has happened to him as a president”.
On the casualty figure of Police officers since the inception of terrorism in Nigeria, he said: “Casualties are not things that lend themselves to mathematical figures, it keeps rising and I keep losing men everyday not only to insurgency but to other factors like robbery and we must know that there must be casualty when it comes to cases of internal security.
“I can tell you that the casualty figure is high, we have been trying to carry out some research to know how many widows we have because from the widows we have, we will be able to ascertain the number of some officers that have been lost” he said.