Reps investigate Maiduguri police protest

Borno state on map used to illustrate the story
Borno state on map used to illustrate the story

The House of Representatives has resolved to investigate the circumstances surrounding the recent protest by personnel of the Nigerian police in Maiduguri.

Police officers who were deployed to Borno State on special duty took to the streets, barricading the highway to protest six months of unpaid allowances.

The angry officers were posted from various units across Nigeria to help in the fight against insurgency were also shooting in the air Monday morning forcing motorists to scamper to safety.

Adopting a motion by Kingsley Chinda (Rivers, PDP), the House also resolved to set up an ad-hoc committee to look into the matter and report back in 14 days.

Mr. Chinda while moving the motion noted that the Police who ordinarily should provide security for the citizens could openly protest, fully armed with guns, leaving the people they should secure in great fear and entirely at their mercy.

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He added that if the issue is not immediately checked, it could lead to anarchy and in turn negatively affect society and cause despondency in the minds of people and teeming Nigerian masses.

“The protest clearly represents failure of public institutions, including the Police, across the country,” Mr Chinda said.

“It has negatively affected and reduced the image and reputation of the Police and the country at large before the rest of the world.”

Also speaking in favor of the motion, Uzomma Nkem-Abonta described the incident as a show of shame and an indication of gross incapacity of security agents.

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“The protest is an indicator that there is no security anywhere,” he said.

He urged the House to summon whosoever is responsible to find out the remote and immediate cause of the protest.

Minority Whip of the house, Yakubu Barde (Kaduna, PDP), also said both chambers of the National Assembly had passed vote of no confidence in the Inspector General of Police, adding that the protest was another vote of no confidence passed on the IGP by his subordinates.

He expressed his fears that one day, the IGP would send men of the force on special duties and they would refuse, leaving Nigerians on their own.

He said that anarchy looms, recalling that some military officers once turned against their superiors for sending them to the battle front without adequate provisions.

The whip said that the committee must determine what the money meant for officers’ welfare were used for.

He added that about seven police officers were recently killed in Abuja adding that the house must protect the young officers and speak for them.

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