President Buhari Let Withdraw VIP Police Escorts And Replace Hunters At University Security Posts

On the same day President Muhammadu Buhari gave directives for the withdrawal or scaling down of police as escorts and guards to very important persons (VIP) in Nigeria; the Vice Chancellor of Adamawa State University in Mubi, Professor Joshua Shall, stated that hunters and vigilante groups have been hired, eighty to be exact, to help ensure security at the university following the recent resumption of academic activities.

This security plan is coming in the face of Boko Haram insurgents known last year to have killed some staff and students as well as destroyed university properties worth billions of naira.

These domestic terrorists reportedly broke into offices, staff quarters, hostels, laboratories, stores and plundered properties.

The Vice Chancellor hopes that as students resume classes and resettle into their hostels, this long standing victimization by Boko Haram will reduce under the guard of hunters.

Mr. President, what kind of society are we living in, where influential politicians, rich businessmen/women and children of the wealthy get police escort and students and staff of a public university are left in the hand of hunters?

Now that the President has directed the present federal police administration, under Mr. Sunday Arase, the Inspector General of Police to cut down the number of police officers attached to the so called dignitaries across the country; what stops Mr. Arase from immediately redirecting hundreds of these officers to go and play their constitutional role at this troubled university environment?

Mr. President, this is not the first time that the issue of withdrawing police officers from VIPs has come up in our country, where these privileged men and women are supposed to hire their own private security guards.

During the era of former Inspector-General of Police, Mr. Mohammed Abubakar, his attempt to withdraw police orderlies attached to private individuals failed due to political pressure and worries from business interests.

Also, during the period of former Inspector-General of Police, Suleiman Abba, the then Assistant In­spector General of Police of Rivers State, Mr. Tunde Ogunsakin, ordered police commands under his zone to withdraw police officers attached to politicians; that too did not have a lasting effect due to political interference.

Now, for the first time we have a presidential directive which makes it certain that this long standing institutional nuisance will stop, in order to bring back proper, efficient, and effective use of police in terms of security delivery.

There is no doubt that the present police administration will carry the directive soonest, so as to send some of these former VIP police officers to a place like the Adamawa State University in Mubi, where they will fully replace the newly recruited eighty hunters and vigilantes.

Dr. John Egbeazien Oshodi is a forensic/clinical psychologist and a former Secretary-General of the Nigeria Psychological Association. ,

(By: John Egbeazien Oshodi, Ph.D.)
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