By Emma Nnadozie
Whenever Police authorities beat their chests asserting that they are one of the very few institutions in Nigeria that have zero tolerance for corruption, many people will look the other way.
In fact, many will boldly assert that their claim is the other way round. However, this Police claim got a boostÂ last Thursday in Lagos when men of the X squad at the Force Criminal Investigations Department (FCID),Â Alagbon, publicly paraded nine members of the force for engaging in corrupt activities.
The officers who wereÂ attached to various police formations in the Force were arrested for allegedly conducting illegal checking points at various highways within the country.Â The arrested policemen were also caught collecting money from motorists plying their route.
Crime Guard learnt that on February 12th, 2010, officers attached to theÂ X Squad led by on (SP)Â Amure Iliya Takobi who were on anti-corruption drive found squeezed N12, 000 in various denominations on six policemen attached to the Federal Highway Patrol.Â The Policemen were conducting illegal check point at a spot popularly known as Aso Rock along the Lagos_ Benin Expressway.
Identities of the six policemen were given as (Insp) Rafiu Akinola, (Sgt) Hama Dogavi (Sgt) Dana Umar, (Cpl) Ason Usere Ikombosa and (Cpl) Adelowo Olaleka.
The other three arrested police officers were identified as (Pc) Leyi Isong attached to Ojo police division, (Pc) Stanley Okobia and Corporal Ley Kabomi.
The FCID Alagbon image_maker, Mr. Friday Achibong told reporters that detectives attached to X squad swung into action after getting series of complaints by members of the public about the nefarious activities of some of these policemen on the highway bordering on intimidation, harassment and extortion.
â€œIn line with the Inspector-General of Police, Ogbonna Onovo anti-corruption posture and based on stern directives from the Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) in-charge of the squad, Innocent Chibike,Â detectives attached to X squad swung into action and rounded them up after carrying out surveillance for hours along Lagos-Benin Highway.Â During the operation, some of them fled abandoning their rifles.
We later recovered those rifles and we have spread our dragnet in search of them.Â They will be made to face disciplinary action by the authorities to serve as a deterrent to other such corrupt officers still remaining in the forceâ€.
When Crime Guard spoke with some of the officers during the parade, they pleaded for forgiveness assuring that they will never engage in such criminal activities again.