Aloysius Attah, Onitsha
The new Commissioner of Police in Anambra State, John Abang has promised the people of improvement in security in the state.
In his maiden briefing with journalists, Abang who had earlier served in Anambra in lesser capacities, said he was poised to serve the people of Anambra State in the most professional manner anchored on respect for human rights.
While extending his hand of fellowship to journalists in the state, he said: “I want to solicit the support and understanding of the fourth Estate of the realm in the resolve of the police command to make Anambra State safer for all and sundry.
“The command will sustain the existing inter-agency collaboration and improve our respect for the rule of law and fundamental human rights in accordance with international best practices. I want to assure all Ndi Anambra both at home and in Diaspora that the command under my watch will work assiduously to continue to make the state the safest in the country.”
“It is also pertinent to emphasize here that, the safety and security of lives and property in the state will not be possible without the cooperation of well meaning members of the public and religious/community leaders. Your trust in the ability of the police and other security agencies will continue to engender a safe and secure environment for all residents in the State”.
Two weeks later, CP Abang visited the NUJ Secretariat in Awka to cement the already established relationship with the members of the fourth estate of the realm.
The Chairman of NUJ, Anambra State Council, Emma Ifesinachi while welcoming the CP and his entourage noted that Abang was the first police boss in the state to visit the NUJ secretariat. He recalled that the highest his predecessors did was to extend an invitation to journalists to come and see them at the police command headquarters.
With over 200 journalists in attendance, the CP thanked the press for accepting his appeal for cooperation. He noted that the last three weeks of his arrival in Anambra had been eventful, even as he stated that the command has recorded several breakthroughs in crime fighting.
He said journalists, as purveyors of information, were indispensable and very significant in the actualisation of a crime-free society. He stressed that the role of journalists could not be relegated to the background as the police operated on information and intelligence gathering.
Abang, who said he was not an armchair professional, maintained that he would ensure that journalists in the state were not maltreated by the rank and file of the police force. He said he was cognisant that bad eggs abound in every profession including the Nigeria Police.
He, however, advised journalists to report cases of molestations by the police to the state command but also tasked them to be objective and fair in their reports. He urged them to detach themselves from sentiments and emotions in information dissemination.
“I appreciate how journalists in Anambra made viral my first successes the first week I was in the state. Anambra State remains one state with the highest number of citizens in diaspora. I want them to be coming back more frequently so as to boost the economy of the state
“I have kept my men on their toes raiding black spots across the state. I have also been visiting all sister agencies that have a stake in this fight against crime in the state and NUJ happens to be one vital such institution,” the CP said.
Responding on behalf of the union, the state chairman of the NUJ, Emma Ifesinachi, applauded the police commissioner’s visit to the NUJ secretariat.
He said journalists really deserved the respect and recognition due to them considering the role they play in nation building and national development.
Ifesinachi therefore assured the police commissioner of maximum cooperation and support, as both arms seek more robust collaborations and partnership. He said the police shouldn’t hesitate to report to the union any journalist being irresponsible in his reportage.
The Anambra NUJ chairman emphasized that journalists would not only make his stay in Anambra eventful but also a successful one. He pointed out that journalists required a safe and secured environment to practise their profession, as he believed that an atmosphere of insecurity made journalists an endangered species.
Ifesinachi also commended the Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Haruna Muhammed for his professional discharge of his duties.
The visit featured an interactive session with journalists while the CP also presented souvenirs and award plaque to the NUJ chairman.