By Ola Ajayi
IBADAN—NOT fewer than 1,260 policemen from the six South West states of the country recently transferred to Northern states, especially the North East, where Boko Haram insurgency was rampant, have complained bitterly against what they termed ‘lopsided transfer that attracts no incentives.
According to a signal by AIG Abdul Bude from Force Headquarters, Abuja, dated December 24, 2016 with reference No CB 4770/FS/FHQ/ABJ/Vol. 5/232, the affected policemen have been mandated to assemble in Kaduna on January 4, 2017.
Though, they said as security agents, their primary duty is to protect lives and property, they are not comfortable with the way the transfer which dates back to 1997 is being handled.
An impeccable source told Vanguard that the transfer carried out in 1997, 2003 and 2015 had recorded heavy casualties among the policemen from the South West due to inadequate facilities.
They are principally unhappy because they are allegedly not treated equally with their Northern counterparts.
One of the affected policemen who spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of victimisation said their northern colleagues who are equally transferred at the same time are treated as sacred cows because despite disobeying the police authorities, by shunning the transfer, still get to collect their salaries.
According to one of them: ‘’Lives of several policemen from the South West that were transferred in the past had been wasted by the insurgents.’’
Other grievances of the aggrieved policemen include non-provision of vehicles to convey them to their new stations; non-provision of accommodation and other welfare packages, language barrier and non-familiarity with the northern terrain.
He said; “Since they started the transfer, lives of several policemen of South West extraction have been wasted because when they transfer them, the authority would not provide necessary facilities such as money, accommodation which make them prone to attacks by the insurgents.
“We are not happy at all. This transfer was earlier stopped by the National Assembly and a powerful politician from the South West in 2015. It is the same policemen that are being transferred now. We knew this because their transfer letters bore their former ranks under the former Inspector General of Police, Solomon Arase.”
With the transfer, he said the police authorities ran foul of an earlier document which states that no policeman should be transferred outside his zone of origin.