The immediate past deputy president of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu, will soon reintroduce a bill for the creation of state police. The Media Adviser to the Senator, Mr. Uche Anichukwu, stated this on Political Platform, a Raypower Radio programme, monitored in Abuja, Tuesday morning.
Anichukwu said although the Bill, which Ekweremadu sponsored along with about 74 other members of the Senate Committee on Constitution Review in the 8th National Assembly could not progress beyond the First reading, there have been calls for the Bill to be reintroduced in the 9th Assembly.
Anichukwu said, “The Senator has been receiving calls from across the country on the need to reintroduce the State Police Bill. “I think the security realities in the country now are very clear and even among his colleagues, the popular opinion is that the Bill should be reintroduced immediately.
“As a matter of fact, I just spoke with the Distinguished Senator this morning and he said plans were underway to reintroduce the Bill along with his colleagues. It is an idea which time has come,” he said. On how the Bill would address the concerns over funding, possible abuse, among others, Anichukwu explained the Bill would likely place funding for each State Police Service on the first line charge.
He also said that the funds could be channelled directly to them through the National Police Service Commission so as to make them financially independent of the state governors. He said, “Regarding the worry that some states may not have the resources to pay state police personnel, it is important to note that it shall not be compulsory on any state to establish a State Police.”Just as the case of state universities, those who have the resources can start, while others who can’t, will continue to rely on federal universities, in this case, Federal Police.
“First, the idea is to model the issue of policing after what we have in the National Judicial Council. “The Federal Police will be responsible for the maintenance of public security, preservation of public order and security of persons and property throughout the federation.
“The Governor may give lawful directive to the Commissioner of Police with respect to the maintenance and securing of public safety and public order as he may consider necessary.” The Commissioner is also empowered by the Bill to request that matter be referred to the State Police Service Commission for review if he feels that the directive is unlawful or contradicts general policing standards or practice.
“In such circumstances, the decision of the State Police Service Commission shall be final and shall not be inquired into by any court. Again, a Governor cannot just wake and sack a Commissioner of Police of his or her State.”
“The Commissioner shall only be removed by the Governor upon the recommendation of the National Police Service Commission praying that he be so removed on grounds of misconduct in the performance of his official duties, serious breach of policing standards, among others.”