No policeman will breach Lagosians fundamental rights under my watch, Alabi assures
Bail is free, no one should give money to any policeman
The Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Abiodun Sylvester Alabi, has assured that no rights of Lagosians would be breached by any police officer during his time in office.
Alabi made the assurance at his first parley with journalists across various media organisations at the Officer’s Mess, GRA, Lagos.
According to him, police in Lagos, going forward, would be working closely with traditional rulers, community leaders, the media and residents to tackle crimes and protect lives and property.
Alabi stated that the media have an important role in shaping the information that would help checkmate activities of the officers, prevent abuse of offices and respect fundamental rights.
He said that his office would need the media in reporting efforts in curbing crimes in all nooks and crannies of the state.
“The allegation has been that police don’t respond on time, so, we will strengthen the Rapid Respond Squad (RRS) and other tactical units to respond properly to distress calls on time.
“There will no longer be any illegal arrest or illegal detention, I will not tolerate anybody being molested or maltreated unjustifiably. The police in Lagos will also arrest criminals with minimal force without brutalising them.
Alabi who said he will make the Lagos police earn the same respect the Nigeria police is accorded during peacekeeping missions, said: “Nigerians have impeccable record when we work with other police in other parts of the world during peacekeeping mission, but what happens when we get home? There are civilians who corrupt the police.
I always tell people that no police officer can force anyone to part with his money, but some Nigerians believe that they are at the mercy of a policeman and they need to give money, which is not so.
“I detest extortion, and it’s a personal decision to give money to any officer but on no account should anyone pay for bail because bail is free but Nigerians do not believe in it. Even on the roads, when they did not commit any offence, they would bring out money when approaching a police checkpoint.
The police boss said he always advise his officers to make good friends. According to him, there are good people who want to be friends with policemen, but many officers do not make themselves available. The friends you made during your active career, he advised, are the ones to fall back to when you retire.
“The only way to succeed practising community policing is by earning the trust of members of the community and by constant engagement with stakeholders.
“I will work closely with members of the 4th estate of the realm. Media men also owe us a duty to assist us to give better service; we must see ourselves as partners in progress. We are not magicians, so, we also need members of the public to give us information on criminal activities,”, he stated.