The Chairman of the Police Service Commission, Dr Solomon Arase (IGP Retired) has assured civil society organizations and stakeholders, that being a former Police Officer would not impede on his sense of Justice, fairness and equity in the performance of his duties.
Noting that he will surely leave his footprints in the sands of time and grow a Police Force that is mentally mobile, Dr. Arase said his appointment as the Chairman of the Commission came at a critical time in ” our national life, when the Commission and the Nigeria Police Force have engaged in seemingly intractable disputations over roles and powers, which regrettably compounded and degenerated into series of litigations”.
“The embarrassing scenario was informed and fuelled by preconceptions, misconceptions and prejudices against each other, founded on mutual distrust and suspicion.”
He continued, “In the raging disconcertment and belligerency, it is the Nigerian people that suffer as neither PSC nor NPF can function effectively in delivering on its mandate without the support and cooperation of the other, especially, when both institutions that are supposed to be mutually -reinforcing are now at daggers drawn”..
” I set out with a vision and mission to de-escalate and contain the raging conflict, douse the disquiet and restore peace, understanding and cooperation between the two institutions necessary for my actualization of Security Sector Reforms (SSR) in Nigeria”
He noted that this was anchored on the fact that synergy produces greater results and success in the attainment of institutional goals.
The PSC Chairman however observed that although, ” peace is essential for success and growth of any institution towards the atttainment of its mandate; however, the pursuit of peace does not compel us to compromise and undermine our integrity as an oversight Agency over the Nigeria Police”.
He confirmed that peace is being restored and trust being built ” between PSC and NPF, “and I can assure you that in no distant time, all the knotty issues which occasioned the conflict will be amicably resolved in a win- win situation , for both institutions “.
He opined that the solution to the various problems facing Police and Policing in Nigeria will be the collective intervention, collaboration and participation of all stakeholders in the Security Sector Reform.
Dr. Arase noted that the PSC cannot effectively deliver on its mandate without the corresponding support of Civil Society Organizations.
These supports, and assistance, he said can come in the form of training and retraining programmes of both personnel of the PSC and NPF ” as well as helping us with logistics that will aid in carrying out our functions
He told the CSOs “The Police Force is ours, it is not impossible to build a Police Force of our aspirations; it only requires involvement, participation, collaboration, assistance and support. Please, get involved”, he pleaded with them.
Kemi Okenyodo, of PWAN, one of the Civil Society Organizations in her remarks, said the appointment of the PSC Chairman was a welcome development, especially within the Society and its members.
She however called on the new Chairman to build a strong professional external oversight body that is equipped with the required capacity to hold the Police accountable for its actions.