Retired Police Chiefs meet Jonathan, oppose state policing

Tafa Balogun
Tafa Balogun, former IG of Police was convicted of graft

After heading a federal police, former IGPs want the force to remain in federal control.

Emmanuel Ogala with agency reports

State police would only be an evil tool for state governors, retired Inspectors-General of Police (IGPs), who met with President Goodluck Jonathan at the State House , warned on Tuesday.

The retired police bosses said they were disturbed by the call for the creation of State Police from certain Nigerians.

“We are of the opinion that the clamour is not in the interest of this nascent democracy,” the IGPs who headed the police force, during the period it gained its infamous reputation as the most corrupt government organ in Nigeria, said.

The ex-police chiefs – Muhammadu Yusuf, Sunday Adewusi, Gambo Jimeta, Aliyu Atta, Ibrahim Coomasie, Musiliu Smith, Tafa Balogun, Sunday Ehindero and Mike Okiro – warned the president that the establishment of state police will “bring us back to the days of ethnic militias where the OPC, MASSOB, Egbesu, ECOMOG and Yankalare held sway.”

The retired Inspector Generals, some of whom later sought political offices, said the political climate in Nigeria would hand state governors a whip to torment their opponents.

They argued that even developed democracies like the United Kingdom and the United States of America that operate state and local police, are returning to a more centralised national police in dealing with contemporary challenges like terrorism and cyber crimes.

Rather than back state policing, the retired police bosses asked the president to re-invigorate the intelligence and investigative arm of the police force to enable it cope with the current challenges

Fund issues

The retired police chiefs also requested full fiscal autonomy for the police, and an increase in funding for the force.

Some critics have said that even if the funding for the present police force were increased, the level of corruption in the force would stall the proper utilization of its funds. Often, high ranking police officers are accused of bribery, deep corruption and public funds mismanagement.

At least, one of the retired police bosses who met with the President, Mr. Balogun, has been convicted of graft. Mr. Balogun was subsequently handed a six months jail term and asset forfeiture, in 2005.

Some of the others, like Mr. Yusuf, Mr. Ehindero, and Mr. Okiro have either been investigated, or prosecuted for corruption while in office as police bosses.

The retired IGPs also asked the president to solve the problems associated with accessing retirement benefits by ex-officers as well as the mismanagement of the police pension scheme.


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  • Mpitikwelu_na_Ugwu_Awusa

    who need a state police when the northern states all have hisbah or sharia police with full arms and uniforms? who is deceiving who?

  • SamIreke

    Of course, they are lying and they know it. Our democracy is no longer nascent, it is already 13 years: that’s teenage. It is ripe enough to begin its full rites of passage into adulthood through guided exposure to life as it really is. State Police is one way we have to travel whether we like or not. The present arrangement has failed irremediably. And as Soyinka would say ‘We Must Set Forth at Dawn’ with it. The real reason that these former Police Chiefs that oversaw the present regime of endemically corrupt police system have risen up to speak is that they are scared, not for their pensions, but for the possible loss of the illegal opportunity to steal money through fraudulent contracts they receive from the Nigerian Police establishment through minnows they put in position on the eve of their retirement.