By Bala Ibrahim
The Police Council, under the chairmanship of President Muhammadu Buhari, has today, Friday, June 4th, confirmed Usman Alkali Baba as the substantive Inspector General of Police. By this development, Alkali has become the 21st indigenous Inspector General of the Nigeria Police, as his confirmation came almost two months after he assumed the office in an acting capacity.
The disclosure was made by the minister of Police Affairs, Alh. Maigari Dingyadi, who announced that the appointment of IGP Alkali Usman Baba was unanimously confirmed by the police council.
The unanimity of the council, is in itself a cognitive attestation of credibly, which became evident, from the way and manner IGP Alkali has been conducting himself.
Since assumption of office, the IGP has been working silently, with passionate intensity towards reforming the police and reshaping the mind-set of the public about the workings of the police. Through proactive innovations, virtually every section of the police force has been rejigged, in order for it to adhere to the values and principles of policing with excellence.
Changes have been introduced silently, with a view to pursuing those values and principles, as enshrined in the police act. And the unanimous agreement by the council today, is an affirmation of the IGP’s efforts towards the achievement of excellence in police service.
Right from the day one, IGP Alkali’s body language came with a question mark on the police work, in something that seems suggestive of how can the Nigeria police force become more effective and accountable?
Without much noise, the IGP began to introduce some structural changes, which if supported with adequate motivation, would certainly make the Nigeria police more effective and efficient.
Because the police and other security forces in Nigeria are key players in the government’s efforts to addressing the problems facing the country today, the president has promised to support the applauded efforts of the new IGP, and all hands must be put on deck to move the country out of the woods.
While addressing the press, minister Dingyadi expressed the President’s confidence on the IGP, with the assurance that he would get all the support he needs, while the country is hoping that he would live up to expectations, particularly with the recent upsurge in violence.
This means the newly confirmed IGP is going to be viewed through the prism of the popular adage that says, “From everyone who has been given much, much more will be expected. Also from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.”
To arrive there, IGP Alkali must hit the ground running, by quickly going into addressing the problems of the police, some of which include, nepotism, corruption, institutional weaknesses and inadequate manpower. Insufficient education and training, inadequate equipment and poor conditions of service are topmost on these problems.
The government should rise to the occasion, by giving unambiguous instructions to the newly established Police Trust Fund, to hasten the process of meeting the objectives of setting it.
The police trust fund was designed to provide a legal framework for the management and control of a special intervention fund, for training and retraining of personnel of the Nigeria Police Force. In addition, the trust fund is charged with the provision of state-of-the-art security equipment, and other related facilities for the enhancement of skills.
And those objectives can only be achieved if there is unity of purpose between all arms of the police, including the Police Service Commission, such that everyone is in agreement, and works together for a better Nigeria police. Already, the new IGP had since stepping into office, began the process of cementing that relationship.
So I join the rest of the country, in congratulating Alkali Baba as Nigeria’s 21st and brand new IGP, whose credibility must have earned him the police council’s unanimous cognitive confirmation.