From Agaju Madugba, Katsina
Katsina Governor, Aminu Bello Masari, has claimed the Nigerian Police lack adequate number of personnel to effectively police the area with a population of about eight million people.
Masari spoke when he received the Inspector-General of Police, Alkali Usman Baba, at the Government House, yesterday.
Masari said the policemen in the were not enough to arrest the the security situation in the state.
“Katsina State has a population of about eight million people and how many policemen do we have in Katsina State?
“From my assessment of policemen in the local government areas, I don’t think we have up to 3,000 policemen in the entire state. Let us assume that they are up to 3,000, what it means is that we have a policemen to every 200,000 people. How effective can that policeman be? Then, we come to arms and ammunition, what do the police have? And when it comes to modern equipment for combating criminality, how much of it do the police have?
“And the same thing goes for all other security agencies. They are in South-South battling militants, they are in the South-East battling IPOB, they are in North-East battling Boko Haram and ISWAP and insurgents and they are in the North-West battling bandits.
“Here, the bandits have infiltrated the communities recruiting young men with as low as N5,000 along with drugs and other intoxicants. We must stop the culture of not reporting criminals because of tribal or family affiliations.”
He pledged to recruit more vigilantes to strengthen security architecture in the state.
He stated that the vigilantes would be recruited in all the 34 local government areas of the state.
The governor said the recruits would be supported financially and logistically.
The governor also said the vigilantes would be posted to strategic places to help the police and other security agencies with relevant information on security.
“If they detect any crime or criminalities, they will alert the security in arresting the situation. These initiative will assist in protecting communities from bandits,” he said.
The IGP said they were in the process of recruiting additional 20,000 policemen from across the country.
“I am in Katsina on a working visit and I will also meet with other arms of security services to see how best to tackle the security situation in the states.
“I came in as IGP at a very difficult time. When I came in, it was in the South-East and South-South that there were series of killings including killing of security personnel and our places of work destroyed.
“While the South-South and South-East are stabilising, the situation in the North-Central and the North-West is getting worse.
“We are going to work harder to see that citizens go about their lawful businesses unmolested. Very soon, we will start our recruitment process. With security policing and the fresh recruitment, we hope that the strength of the Nigerian police will be re-enforced.
“We will recruit from every local government in the country. It is the directive of the President that we should recruit 10,000 for 2020 and anther 10,000 for 2021. From across all the 771 local government areas. We are going to redeploy these policemen to their local government areas to fight crime,” he said.