Nigerians Fear Police Officers More than Criminals – Femi Gbajabiamila

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The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila has observed that Nigerians are more afraid of police officers than criminals as he promised that the 9th Assembly will do its best to overhaul policing in Nigeria.

The remarks were made at the resumption of the House following a two month break. The Speaker commended President Buhari for signing the police reform bill into law noting that the police force with its present structure cannot meet the expectations of Nigerians.

Excerpts from his welcoming speech read,

“Two weeks ago, His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR, signed the Police Reform Act into law. The Act is the first significant reform effort in a generation. It is the beginning and not the end of such measures. The Nigeria Police Force, as it currently operates, has too long and too often failed to meet the expectations of the Nigerian people.

“In many parts of our country, people are more afraid of encounters with the police than they are of criminals.

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“That’s not right, and we can no longer stand for it. There will be, in this 9th House of Representatives, further legislation to improve police performance across the board and to introduce mechanisms for individual and collective accountability in the Nigeria Police Force. Our objective is nothing short of a total overhaul of the culture and practice of policing in Nigeria.”

Gbajabiamila also revealed that the House of Assembly will commence work on the armed forces trust fund in the shortest time as possible.

“In the same vein, we have begun, and we will expedite work on the Armed Forces Trust Fund Bill so that in the shortest possible time, we can finalise and pass legislation that ensures once and for all that the resources we need to protect the homeland are never at the mercy of politics or changes in policy or personnel.”

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