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Inspector General of Police, Solomon Arase said Wednesday that the Nigeria Police will henceforth carry out Psychological assessment, and snap urine tests for signs of drug abuse on all policemen before they are issued lethal weapons at their duty points.


The IGP made the disclosure at the programme launch of drug testing of police officers, mass screening and campaign against sudden death of police officers in Abuja.


Arase disclosed that after an in-depth study, the police management team has discovered that some of the fatal cases associated with this malaise could lead to mishandling of firearms by police officers who are psychologically unfit to handle firearms at that particular time.


The IGP consequently also opined that some of these psychological problems could also have resulted from drug abuse by some police personnel.


“One of the areas identified that had made the public cast aspersions on the police was the relatively frequent cases of death of members of the public from misapplication of lethal weapons” he said.


He disclosed that the Police High Command was working in partnership with a reputable group of psychologists in this project, adding that apart from denying access to firearms or retrieving guns from officers who fail such snap drug tests, they will also provide appropriate help to wean them from drugs or other emotional or psychological diatribes that may trigger such unprecedented and fatal outcome in their line of duty.


Arase also announced a policing strategy that will witness the transition of the police from exclusive reliance on lethal weapons in management of threats and social disorders to the engagement of less lethal technologies and weapon system such as muscular disruption technology weaponry which is commonly referred to as Laser or stun guns


He disclosed that orders have been placed for this weaponry and adequate training frame work is being put in place.


“My long term vision is to effectively address issues that engender misuse of firearms and give true meaning to our mandate of safe guarding the lives of our citizens” he said.




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