The Inspector –General, IG, of Police, Ibrahim Idris, has called for synergy between traditional rulers and security agencies in the fight against crime.
Mr Idris made the call while presenting a paper at the National Council of Traditional Rulers of Nigeria, NCTRN, 9th General Assembly in Port Harcourt on Tuesday.
The theme of the assembly is “Community Policing as a catalyst to Crime Prevention: The Role of Traditional Rulers.’’
He said that the police could not carry out its responsibility without support from traditional rulers and their subjects.
“We have adopted community policing with the support of the royal fathers to identify the causes of insecurity in the communities.
“This is aimed at preventing crime and criminality in the communities to have total peace for development to take place,” he said.
According to Idris, the police had invited the council to contribute in most of the security summits it had in the past.
“Your engagement is critical because of your role in the security architecture of the nation as the communities you are leading are a veritable source of information.
“We can get credible information with cooperation from you and your subjects to accost criminal elements in the communities,” he added.
He urged traditional rulers to encourage their subjects to refrain from inflammatory statements and give evidence when and where necessary to ensure that criminals arrested face the law.
The police boss pleaded with the royal fathers to condemn crime and not reward criminals with chieftaincy titles when source of livelihood was not known.
Mr Idris also stated that poor budgetary allocation to the police had been impeding the force from tackling its challenges.
“We seek that you extend your support in the area of logistics and construction of police barracks to help the force.
“We plead that you seek the support of your subjects for the passage of the Police Trust Fund Bill in the National Assembly,” he said.
The police boss said that kidnapping and armed robbery in the North-Central, South-East and South-South Zones had been minimised.
He assured the monarchs that the force was reviewing its strategy and adopt new ones to end the menace of killing, armed robbery and kidnapping.
“Some arrests have been made in relation to the clashes in Benue and they have been charged to court,” Idris said.
He added that the police had done well in elections in some states such as Edo, Ondo and Anambra where no single violence was recorded.
Mr Idris disclosed that the police authority had re-organised the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS, under Deputy Inspector General of Police, DIG, Operations, Force headquarters.
“SARS is not charged with the responsibility of tackling kidnapping and armed-robbery cases,” he said.
The National Security Adviser, NSA, Babagana Monguno, said that traditional rulers were crucial to national security.
He was represented by the Director of External Services, Office the National Security Adviser, Abba Ibrahim.
Mr Monguno said that the traditional institution had been involved in maintaining peace before colonisation, adding that this informed the need to tap from their wealth of knowledge.
He urged them to come up with an unambiguous and precise report that would be implementable within a period.
“We are looking forward to having a strong synergy with you to fight crime and criminality, so, we trust in your ability to come up with an implementable report,” he said.