Ekiti State governor and Chairman of the Nigerian Governors Forum, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, has stated that many Nigerians don’t see the Police officers as their friends, saying only police reforms can bring about that needed friendship and trust.
The governor stated this at the weekend during a stakeholders’ forum on community policing, involving heads of security agencies, public servants, politicians, civil society organisations, youth and women organisations, heads of government institutions, trade and professional groups in Ado-Ekiti.
Governor Fayemi in his address lamented the non-implementation of a wide range of recommendations made at different conferences on how the Nigeria Police can be reformed in the last 20 years.
Represented by the State Attorney- General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr Wale Fapohunda; the NGF chairman urged the Federal Government not to despise recommendations made by the Judicial Panel of Inquiry set up in the wake of the ENDSARS protests with special attention on getting justice and compensations for victims of police abuse.
In his words, “A large number of our people still don’t see police as their friends. So, it seems to me that an important way we can get that trust is through police reform. We cannot simply hope to achieve the intent of community policing without police reforms.
“The Federal Government should take seriously the reports of the judicial panel of inquiry that has been set up in the aftermath of the ENDSARS protests. If we are going to move forward we have to look backward and ensure that our people that have serious issues with police are properly compensated and their pains recognised.”
In his remark, a former Inspector-General of Police, Mr Sunday Ehindero, called on the stakeholders to support the establishment of community policing to tame the tide of armed bandits, kidnapping and other security challenges Nigeria is currently faced with.