By Evelyn Usman
Chairman, Police Service Commission, PSC Musiliu Smith, yesterday, appealed to members of the public to always raise the alarm if they noticed criminal elements in their communities were applying to join the Nigeria Police Force with the recommendation of some community leaders.
In the same vein, he said upright and responsible citizens should be encouraged to apply for recruitment into the Force, with a view to having the right persons in the Force.
Speaking at the South West Zone Police recruitment sensitization forum held at the Alausa auditorium, Smith, a retired Inspector General of Police, stated that the purpose of providing security and safety in Nigeria would be defeated if the Police as a security organization was contaminated with criminally minded persons, owing to the poor calibre of those applying for the recruitment.
He said, ” No one knows better the character of its citizens than members of the community. Therefore, citizens are encouraged to kindly urge people of good character to join the Force.
“Additionally, citizens should endeavour to encourage serving police officers by reporting and commending professionalism and acts of valour to relevant authorities as much as they regularly report misconducts by bad eggs.
For those applying for admission into the Police, he advised them to take the process seriously by preparing very well for the examination, in order to give them the best possible chance of success.
He noted that “ The complex difficulty nature of policing a nation with over 400 ethnic groups cannot be overlooked in highlighting challenges the police encounter in the discharge of their responsibilities, there is, therefore, the need for general inclusion of men, women and the youth as a means of engaging efficient policing”
Toeing the line of Smith, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, in his remarks, lamented that Lagos State indigenes were under-represented in the Police and Armed Forces and therefore, charged parents and guardians to encourage their children to join both security agencies.
Sanwo- Olu who was represented by the Secretary to the Lagos State Government, Mrs Folashade Jaji, attributed the nonchalant attitude of youths towards joining the Police to unprofessional conduct by some policemen. She, therefore, called on the PSC to do the needful , in order to make the profession an enviable one.
She said, “ If Lagos State is under-represented, it means we will not have children to go to in future, in the Police. This sensitization should not be a one-off thing. The Chairman of the PSC should look at all aspects of recruitment into the Police, whereby policemen will start behaving in a manner that will make the profession attractive to the younger ones.
There should be continuous training as well as reorientation. The message today is that we need to have more people from Lagos state, in the Police and Armed Forces so that this country can work as it should”.
On his part, the representative of the Ogun State Governor, Olusola Subaru, noted that the prosperity of any economy would only be attained in an ambience of security. The retired Assistant- Inspector General of Police, also called on the need for the Police to do more to change the public’s perception of them.
Also, he charged members of the public to look at the good side of the Police and applaud their efforts where necessary, noting that such conduct was capable of motivating them to do more as well as change the wrong mindset of the citizens towards the Police.