Project Nigeria wants civil society to monitor the performance of the former IG.
Even as the debate over his eligibility rages, the newly appointed Chairman of the Police Service Commission, PSC, Mike Okiro, has been charged to ensure that the Nigeria Police Force is urgently reformed and decentralized for improved security in Nigeria.
A group, Project Nigeria, PN, which stated this, said in a statement signed by its Coordinating Secretary, Wale Okuniyi, on Monday, argued that there would have been no need for the declaration of a state of emergency in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa States by the Federal Government, if policing had been effective in the country.
President Goodluck Jonathan recently named Mr. Okiro, a former Inspector General of Police as chairman of the PSC, with a mandate to inject innovations into policing in the country.
Mr. Okunniyi allayed the fears of those opposed to the appointment, stating that though Mr. Okiro is professionally and constitutionally qualified to head the commission, he would not compromise because of his links with the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
He asked the new PSC boss to turn around the force just as he wants the civil society organizations to monitor the commission to ensure its satisfactory performance.
“Going by Okiro’s profile and exposure, he was a top police cop and legal mind, who is professionally and constitutionally qualified to head the police service commission,” he said.
“However, for Okiro or any other appointee to succeed in turning around the decaying Nigerian police, the commission must be effectively monitored and engaged by the civil society as enduring panacea to the worsening security situation in the country.”
“Rather than dissipate energy on whether Okiro is constitutionally qualified to head the police commission, we will like to admonish our comrades in the civil society to urgently fashion out modality for strategic engagement of the commission as no public servant under this present porous governance structure can deliver if not well engaged and prompted by the people.”
Mr. Okunniyi said all hands must be on deck for constructive engagement of all the country’s service commissions, including the police, to get the best out the current democracy.
He also advised Mr. Okiro and his team not to compromise performance as they take over the affairs of PSC, stressing that it is incumbent on the commission to ensure that the Nigerian police is enabled to combat the growing menace of kidnapping and suicide bombings currently ravaging the country.