President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday said, the entire structure of the Nigeria Police Force, NPF, was being overhauled, re-positioned and primed with modern technological gadgets, to meet rising challenges across the country, as an intelligence loop among all security outfits has been created.
In a statement signed by his media aide, Femi Adesina in a secret meeting at the presidential villa with some northern traditional rulers led by Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammadu Sa’ad Abubakar III and Emir of Kano, Dr. Muhammad Sanusi Buhari said, ongoing reform of the police will include recruitment of more hands, cultivation of stronger local intelligence and networking with communities, traditional rulers and adequate training.
He said: “I have decided to meet with Your Highnesses to assure you that government is determined to tackle and deal decisively with all security challenges facing us as a nation.
“This consultation therefore is to engage you, our royal fathers, so that, collectively, we can arrive at solutions to any and all security problems in the country.”
He urged all rulers to play their parts to finally address the security challenges, particularly traditional rulers, in their respective communities, where they feel the pulse of the people, being the closest to the populace at the grassroots level.’’
Buhari advised them to cooperate with the security agencies by providing them with knowledge of communities and individuals.
According to the President, “these policies and programmes include a robust revamping of police intelligence gathering capacity and the significant boosting of the numbers of security personnel in our local communities. This in specific terms will include recruiting more police officers and doing so whenever possible from their local government areas, where they would then be stationed in the best traditions of policing worldwide.
“Working with the State governments also, we intend to improve the equipping of the police force with advanced technology and equipment that can facilitate their work. To drive this, I recently created a full-fledged Ministry of Police Affairs.
“As I said during my meeting with the Traditional Rulers from the South-West, directives have been issued to the appropriate federal authorities to speedily approve licensing for States requesting the use of drones to monitor forests and other criminal hideouts,’’ he said.
The President also said that, CCTVs will be installed on highways and other strategic locations, so that criminal activities in some hidden places can be exposed, more effectively monitored and open to actionable interventions.
The Sultan of Sokoto replied saying“We have come to assure you of our total support, total commitment and undiluted dedication to moving the nation forward as one of the best countries of the world.
While Abubakar said the various communities who have always upheld the traditional thrones in various communities had always upheld the virtues of peace, unity and stability, right from time promised to support the government to succeed in tackling security challenges in the country.
The Sultan further commended Zamfara state Governor Bello Matawalle for the immense peace in the state since his stay in office, and decided to open up all channels of communication, urging other governors to adopt same model.
He also advised the President to strengthen the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) for more effective monitoring of drug-related situations in the country for correction and prosecutions.