Members of the Penpushing Media after an exhaustive discussion on the dismissal of some men of the now disbanded Special Anti Robbery Squad,(SARS),over the weekend came up with the following observations and resolutions:
- That generally speaking, the PSC’s decision is a welcome development in the process of cleansing the rot in the Nigeria Police Force. Discussants however, cautioned that such policemen to be dismissed should be given fair hearing before being booted out.
- Members of the Penpushing Media cutting across the various strata of society, also cautioned that dismissed policemen should not just be thrown out to the society, suggesting that they should be rehabilitated so that they would not constitute a very dangerous burden and threat to the society.
- It unanimously agreed that if the Nigerian government is determined to cleanse and reform the police, policemen found to have violated the human rights of citizens through extortion, brutality, extra judicial killings and framing of citizens must not be retained in the force under any guise. They argued that using some of the officers as scapegoats would send a strong positive message that the NPF does not condone unethical and unprofessional practices.
- Beyond dismissing those found to have misused their positions and arms against innocent citizens, Penpushing members also called for diligent and comprehensive prosecution in the courts for appropriate sentences against such morally deficient and unprofessional officers.
- The Penpushing discussants were also of the firm opinion that no one should entertain any fear that the dismissed officers might turn the trainings they had had in the force into crimes and criminality against the society. They noted that a reformed, well – motivated, well – trained and well – equipped police force would be able to quell any such threat the few dismissed officers could pose to the nation.
- Members further agreed that punishing erring officers through the courts would constitute vital justice for the numerous victims of their extortion, brutality, extra judicial killings, etc and consequently calm down tension in the society.
- Members also concluded that the expected reform of the police force should cover the command and control units of the NPF. , pointing out that many of the erring officers had collaborators in their superiors who always looked away whenever they go against the force’s Standard Operating Procedures, SOP. It was, therefore, suggested that proper investigation would also expose some superior officers who might have compromised their supervisory roles and acted as accomplices in the crimes committed by their subordinates.
- It was finally argued and recommended that proper and adequate funding of the NPF would reduce the negative tendencies to go against the law. This, they said, should be done through an enhanced salary structure, other welfare packages, up – to – date training, merit – driven promotions and up – to – date equipment.
- On recruitment, the Penpushing Media members said the process should be well – structured such that good morals are inculcated by the trainers into the recruits right from the Police College instead of the current corporal treatment induced training.
- The participants on the #EndSars protests expressed hope that it will positively impact on governance and management not only in the police force but generally in the polity.
In conclusion, the discussants commended the unsung heroes in the police force who inspite of all challenges have remained patriotic and humane in the discharge of their duties.