By Ishola Balogun
The Inspector General of Police, IGP, Alhaji Hafiz Ringim, in an exclusive interview with Saturday Vanguard on Thursday, at the Force Headquarters, Louis Edet House, refuted newspaper reports that he had been queried by President Jonathan.
Obviously disturbed by what he considered publication of malicious rumours capable of dampening the morale of the courageous officers who were victims of the vicious assault on the Force Headquarters and who demonstrated great professionalism in limiting the damage, the IGP said that the least he expected from reporters was to verify their facts before publication.
The IGP, who was scheduled to meet with all the Deputy Inspector Generals of Police, DIGs; Assistant Inspector Generals of Police, AIGs, as well as Commissioners of Police, CPs, last Tuesday had to postpone the meeting after being summoned to the Presidency for an undisclosed security meeting.
The summon to the Presidency provided the IGP the opportunity to express appreciation to President Jonathan, who had visited the Force Headquarters to pay his condolence to the IGP in particular and the police force in general.
For the IGP and the entire force, it was a visible demonstration that Nigeria has a caring Presidency and a worthy father of the nation.
“Nothing like a query was issued to me”, said the IGP..
In a related development, a top officer speaking on conditions of anonymity, added that the IGP might have used the occasion of the visit to Aso Rock to seek the support of President Jonathan in ensuring that the Police Force is adequately funded to be able to deal with the increasing demands placed upon the police by groups and individuals threatening the well being of society.
The reliable source pointed out that the police presented a budget of N40 billion for 2010 but the sixth National Assembly, NASS, approved only N12 billion.
The source said that he was sure that the IGP would have solicited the President’s support to ensure that the police is more adequately funded in 2012; especially when the police has embarked on mass training of its staff in order to transform the Force into a more professional unit operating on more ethical foundations.