Many residents driving around Akwa Ibom metropolis during the lockdown are using fake security passes, the police have alleged.
“The CP observed with dismay that the passes issued to those on essential duties have been largely abused to the extent that the passes are photocopied and issued to all manner of persons thereby making it relatively difficult by the security agencies to identify the original copies of the pass,” the police spokesperson in Akwa Ibom, N-Nudam Fredrick, said in a statement Monday evening.
PREMIUM TIMES reported how police officers enforcing the lockdown in the state tightened their operation along major roads in Uyo on Monday, preventing authorised persons, including medical doctors, from driving through the roads.
Mr Fredrick, a chief superintendent of police, said every person on essential duty should get a new security pass from the office of the Secretary to the Akwa Ibom State Government or the senior special assistant on security to Governor Udom Emmanuel by Tuesday, April 21.
The old pass, he said, is no longer valid.
“All passes issued to Medical Personnel – Doctors, Pharmacists, Nurses, etc remain valid. However, such passes must be accompanied with the holders’ identity cards otherwise they will not be honoured,” the police spokesperson said.
The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), Akwa Ibom State, said in a statement that “most of their members could not go to work because of the development.”
“Today at about midday, the State Officers Committee led by the Chairman, Dr Nsikak Nyoyoko while on official duty to the University of Uyo Teaching Hospital (UUTH) to distribute PPEs was denied passage along Udo Udoma Avenue by Aka road roundabout by men of the Nigerian Police Force purportedly on orders from ‘above,’” the NMA said in the statement signed by its state chairman, Mr Nyoyoko.
“This ugly incident was preceded by numerous calls by our members of having been refused passage at different points in Uyo metropolis.
“To this end, NMA-AKS advises all her members that in the event of being denied passage while on your way to work, please be civil, do not resist, but return home and notify your superior at work,” Mr Nyoyoko had said.
A police officer who was enforcing the lockdown was demoted earlier this month from the rank of a sergeant to corporal for assaulting a surgeon in Uyo.
The police commissioner later apologised to doctors in Akwa Ibom over the conduct of the erring police officer.
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