Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja
President Muhammadu Buhari has charged members of the Police Service Commission (PSC) to redouble their efforts in ensuring that the Nigeria Police Force delivered on its responsibilities.
This is even as the commission has said the burden of inadequate funding has persisted, thereby putting the commission at a disadvantage.
According to a statement by the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, Buhari spoke Tuesday in Abuja while receiving the 2018 annual report of the PSC, noting that, “the commission has the most challenging responsibility of carrying out oversight responsibilities of the police force.”
“The people that comprise this commission are mostly personally known to me and some of them have been through the mill, as it were. Therefore, I expect them to put the police in order. I personally believe that the Inspector-General is doing his best, the police are always in the frontline and, unless we get the police working effectively, the security of this country will remain in doubt.”
The President said, by the mandate of the commission, the task of appointment, promotion and disciplinary control of officers of the Nigerian Police Force, except the Inspector-General, fall under it.
“Your assignment is enormous and calls for sacrifice and commitment, especially now that almost every country is faced with severe internal security challenges. Nigeria is no exception.”
The President also praised the PSC for new ideas introduced in the workings of the police: “I am aware that you have put policies in place to reposition the police force in the areas of merit-driven promotion and prompt disciplinary actions. Government will require that you redouble your efforts and ensure that the police force receives the required assistance for optimum service delivery.”
Similarly, Buhari called on the commission to ensure harmonious working relationship with the police force.
“I wish to see close communication and understanding between you and the Nigeria Police. This is necessary for the overall efficiency and effectiveness in securing the country,” said the President.
Earlier, chairman of the PSC, Musiliu Smith, noted that the envelope system of federal budgeting has left the commission always financially crippled and unable to attend adequately to its very important constitutional responsibilities.
The PSC, he said, has continued to face inadequate funds to verify and conduct the processes leading to police recruitment, police promotion and discipline.
The PSC chairman added that the Establishment Act, 2001 has also not helped in the operations of the commission, as certain provisions of the act have continued to frustrate the PSC’s attainment of optimum performance.
According to him, “Most glaring are the fewness of full-time members and the poor remuneration of the staff of the commission in relation to other commissions in the federation.