The Paramount Ruler of Calabar South Local Government Area of Cross River State, Nyam Nnankor 1, Prof. Itam Hogan Itam has said that State Police breed dictatorship.
“It would give the state governors more power to deal with the people negatively, leading to dictatorship in governance in the states” the Monarch said.
Speaking with DAILY POST on Friday evening, Prof Itam decried the continuous debate on the establishment of the state police, saying it is tantamount to giving the state governors extra power to flush out perceived enemies, deal with self acclaimed opponents and anyone who does not support his administration.
“I was a young man in the sixties when there was State Police, we called it local government Police, they were extremely wicked, and government functionaries used them to perpetrate evils and killing.
“During political era, Governor sent them to kill their enemies and oppositions; people’s lives were in danger. These police were under the control of the governors and they used them effectively to achieve their aims” he alleged.
He said he support community police, “I support community police and let it be under the control of a central authority with DPOs, commissioners, AIG etc. If not, what happened then, will replicate itself now.
“Now that we have Federal Police, do you not see how they carry out the order of the Inspector General of Police and President who are their bosses?” he asked.
The Monarch noted that any Nigerian with power is something else; “Nigerians of the sixties are not different from Nigerians of today. The State Police would be official thugs of the governor, their bosses; they will do anything to please them.
“The frustration is, whom would you report to? if you know whom you would report to for action to be taking, you can tolerate some of these excesses. When you look round and you know that there is nobody to report to, there is no way for you to seek protection, nowhere for you to seek redress, it leads to a lot of frustration.
“Please let us maintain this unity form of Police; later we form community police where there will be a lot of trainings and advocacies and the police will know the people in the community and the community will know them.
“With advocacies and trainings, the people will accept the police as their own and work with them, the police too will accept the people in the community as their own and work with them, there will be no suspicion of any kind but close working relationship. When the public start having confidence in the police, 3/4 of work is done.
“Most Nigerians hate police, some people will like to stay without police, we need a lot of confidence building, I will prefer community police to state police, don’t give the governors more power to deal with the people,” the Monarch pleaded.