IBADAN – The Speaker of Oyo State House of Assembly, Hon. Adebo Ogundoyin has said that it is time the federal government hearkens to the popular call for the total overhaul of the Nigeria Police Force, just as he calls for an end to Police brutality across the country.
Ogundoyin said this when he joined ENDSARS protesters who gathered at the main entrance of Oyo State Secretariat, Ibadan.
The Speaker said total reform was long overdue in the Nigeria Police Force, stressing that the protest by Nigerians on the activities of men of the NPF especially SARS shows that people could no longer tolerate their excesses.
Hon. Ogundoyin who was handed one of the placards by the ENDSARS protesters applauded President Buhari’s decision to disband SARS, but added that men of the Nigeria Police Force have continued to arrogate too much unbridled power to themselves, hence the strong criticism from different quarters.
“There abound cases of human rights abuses by the officers of the Nigeria Police while their rascality continues with impunity. The civil populace is daily being traumatized by the police whose statutory duty is to protect them. To me, this has become unacceptable and unbearable.
“I therefore see the agitation for an end to police cruelty from Nigerians especially the youths as commendable. Many of the officers behave unprofessionally and unethically particularly when they are in uniform. There must be total review of the laws establishing the force in line with International best practices.” The Speaker maintained.
He commended the organizers of ENDSARS protest in Ibadan for conducting themselves peacefully, but condemned the shooting to death of three protesters in Ogbomosoland and the vandalisation of the palace of Soun, Oba Oladunni Oyewumi Ajagungbade the third.
According to the Oyo State Speaker, government must put some degree of sanity in the activities of the Police force especially in the areas of arrest and detention of suspects as well as abuse of firearms.
“I also want to say that there must be regular training for our police officers so as to constantly keep them informed and abreast of their professional ethics and dictates especially in handling cases and in arresting and relating with suspects.
“May I also say that their salaries need to be reviewed upward as the small take home may be responsible for the way they extort money from the citizens. Above all, I think to get the best out of our police officers, they must equally be well motivated to boost their morale as the job of policing is really a tasking and challenging one.” Ogundoying posited.