In order for Nigerian Police Force to be on par with their counterparts around the world, the Cadet ASP Course 21/2002 of the Nigerian Police has pleaded with the Federal Government to integrate digital innovation into Nigerian policing.
It made the call at its 20th anniversary celebration held over the weekend at the Radisson Blu Hotel in Ikeja, Lagos.
Addressing the journalists, the Chairman of the Anniversary Committee, ACP Sanusi Jidda, who noted that policing world over has been digitized, said Nigeria is lagging behind.
He said there is need for the government to introduce digital innovation into the police force to aid security situation of the country.
He added that the government should see to the welfare of the policemen as a matter of urgency to make them efficient and deliver their duties effectively.
Reflecting on their journey from 2002 when they were enlisted to join the police, Jidda said: “We all started together, precisely on August 15, 2002. By the grace of God it is 20 years today and we may not be able to gather as we have done today because in the next few years some of us will retire and some might have left the service.
“After 20 years we have really come a long way. We decide to gather to forge ahead and to make suggestion of the way forward to make the Nigeria Police better. After thus event we are going to have a communiqué to be forwarded to the appropriate authorities.”
He regretted that about 45 out of those who started together have died in the course of their service to the nation.
Also speaking, the Secretary of the Committee, CSP Olabisi Okuwobi, said there is a total reform going on in the Nigeria Police Force under the leadership of the current Inspector General of Police, Usman Alkali Baba, who is keen on senitizing the police force.
“We could all see how the bad eggs among the policemen are being dealt with. Reformation starts with the leadership and that is what we have in the leadership of our IG now. He is sacrificing everything to make sure the police are people friendly. He has been trying to build people’s confidence in police again and that is why he has been seriously dealing with the erred policemen as we can all see.
“We want the people, the community walk with us while rebuilding the police and that us why we have tagged our anniversary ‘Walk with the Police’. Everybody should walk with us so that we can have a peaceful society. This set, I mean ASP Course 21 is a unique one among other policemen in Nigeria. You can attest to it that every police officer from this set is hardworking as many if us have carved a niche for ourselves in the course if discharge our duties with both national and international awards and community recognition.”
Okuwobi, who was the former DPO of Ejigbo Divisional Police Station in Lagos and former Public Relations Officer of Nigeria Police Trust Fund, said they are making good relationship with the people in the society as they would return to the same society after retirement, admonishing other police officers to create good rapport with the the people.
Also speaking about having few women in they category, CSP Veronica Ameh Akpa, the Officer in charge of Zonal Intelligence Bureau, Zone II, in Lagos. “I know you are all witnesses to that. We’ve held very sensitive positions that women have never held. We are equal to the task, and I’ll say that twenty years down the lane, I think we’re doing well”
On the challenges, she said “One of the greatest challenges that we have faced is losing our colleagues. We started at about four hundred and something, and we have lost over forty in the cause of the job. Some died while doing the job and it’s very disheartening. But we thank God, because they paid the ultimate sacrifice”
Veronica also speaks about female IGP: “We would make that history. I believe we will make it. Course 21 will make it. I want to be modest. I will say that people like myself, Seyi, the chairman of the planning committee, and a great host of others have made this course unique. We have said that we must unite to serve the country selflessly, and that is why course 21 stands out. We have said that we will never give up. There is no No! We do not have no in our dictionary. It is always yes. Ahead, ahead we must achieve, and that is why Course 21 is unique”
The two-day anniversary featured endurance walk as they trekked from Police College in Ikeja through Oba Ladejobi Street to Joel Ogunnaike, then through Mobolaji Bank Anthony Way and back to the police college.
Lectures were also delivered to them at Radisson Blu Hotel, Ikeja on the topics such as ‘Advancing Friendly Policing and Public Safety in Contemporary Nigeria’, ‘Pre-Retirement Plans and Living Happily Ever after Retirement’, and ‘Safe, Healthy and Sustainable Diets/Lifestyle for Police Officers above 40 years’ given by Dr. Charles Ironagbe; a medical doctor, Dr. Amure Olusola; and a retired police officer, Obafemi Gbemileke Abiodun respectively.