The acting Inspector-General of Police, Olukayode Egbetokun, has said that the Nigeria Police Force cannot afford to vacate checkpoints.
The IGP, according to a statement yesterday by the Force spokesman, ACP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, noted that checkpoints are vibrant parts of visibility policing and are crucial to effective policing of the contemporary Nigerian society.
He ordered the deployment of the Monitoring Unit and X-Squad operatives, in collaboration with supervisory senior officers, to conduct thorough assessments of key checkpoints along highways.
He said the Force was committed to restoring a sense of order and responsibility to Nigeria’s highways and police operations, restoring sanity, maintaining order, and fostering a sense of trust between law enforcement and the communities it serves.
The statement read in part, “Recognising the importance of safe and efficient road networks, the IG has ordered the deployment of the improved Monitoring Unit and X-Squad operatives, in collaboration with supervisory senior officers, to conduct thorough assessments of key checkpoints along our highways.
“This initiative is aimed at ensuring that checkpoints are strategically placed and effectively managed, devoid of extortion and corrupt practices, and minimizing any inconveniences to the public while maintaining public safety.
“Responding to the concerns raised about indiscriminate checkpoints that may disrupt the flow of traffic and/or encourage any inappropriate behaviours of officers on the roads and inconvenience citizens, the IG reaffirmed that the NPF cannot afford to do away with checkpoints as they are vibrant parts of visibility policing, which is crucial to effective policing of our contemporary society.
“The IG stated emphatically that though such checkpoints and other operations may occasionally create inconveniences, they are aimed at achieving anti-crime goals. He appealed to the public to cooperate with the operatives for the greater good while assuring that the supervisory officers have been charged to lecture and supervise their men to uphold the principles of decency and dignity in all operations, which include fostering a respectful and professional demeanor among officers and men as well as optimising the use of technology and intelligence to enhance operational efficiency.”
He reassured of the commitment of the Force to ensuring safety and security of every individual traversing Nigeria’s highways.
Egbetokun asked members of the public to always cooperate with the police and other security agents on operations.
He also urged them to share feedback, experiences and suggestions with the police.