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Nigeria Not Ready for State Police, Says IGP

During a national dialogue on state policing organized by the House of Representatives in Abuja, Kayode Egbetokun, the Inspector-General of Police, expressed his view that Nigeria is not yet “mature” enough for state-controlled police forces.

The event, held on Monday, centered on the theme ‘Pathways to Peace: Reimagining Policing in Nigeria.’

Represented by Ben Okolo, an Assistant Inspector-General of Police, Egbetokun shared that the leadership of the Nigeria Police Force believes the country is not prepared for such a significant shift in its policing structure.

“It is the submission of the leadership of the Nigeria police force that Nigeria is yet to mature and ready for the establishment of state-controlled police,” Okolo conveyed on behalf of Egbetokun.

The dialogue brought together various stakeholders to discuss the potential reformation of Nigeria’s policing, a topic that has gained traction amidst ongoing national security challenges. Advocates for state police argue that such a move would allow for more localized, effective law enforcement that is better adapted to the specific needs of individual states.

However, opponents, including the current leadership of the national police, caution that the proposal could lead to further complexities. Concerns revolve around issues such as the potential for increased political interference in policing matters, the possibility of uneven resource distribution, and the varying capacity of states to manage their police forces effectively.

This stance by the Inspector-General reflects a cautious approach to what would be a fundamental change in the nation’s approach to law and order. The dialogue continues to stir a robust debate among policymakers, law enforcement officials, and the public on the future of policing in Nigeria. As the country grapples with these critical discussions, the outcomes of such dialogues could significantly shape the trajectory of national security and governance in Nigeria.

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