By G9ija

Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, yesterday, charged the Special Constables under the state’s community policing project of the Nigeria Police Force to arrest prisoners who escaped from the Oko and Sapele Road correctional facilities during the #EndSARS protests.

He assured that they would benefit from the state government’s health and life insurance schemes, adding that the 877 Special Constables were part of the first batch of the 2000 constables to be trained for community policing in collaboration with the Nigeria Police.

Obaseki disclosed this at the passing out parade of the special constables under the Community Police Project at the Police Training School, Ogida, Benin City.x

He said immediately after his inauguration, security was his first challenge and as such he was pleased to attend the passing out parade of the Special Constables, who would assist and collaborate with the Nigeria Police in community policing.

His words: “The idea of community policing is not new to us as an administration. The concept, which has led to the recruitment, training and graduation of the special constables, was one of the ideas I discussed with the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Adamu Mohammed, when he was Assistant Inspector General (AIG) of Police Zone 5 in Benin City, several years ago.

“Today’s passing out parade of the 877 personnel is legitimising a structure that started in Edo State. You have been recruited to take policing activities in your communities. You will join the Edo State Government to work for the Edo people. We are not bosses, but we are here to serve the people.

Obaseki added that the state government would continue to train security personnel on a yearly basis to keep them abreast of the new security models and upgrade their skills to help secure the state and its people.

Adamu and Edo State Commissioner of Police (CP), Johnson Kokumo commended Obaseki for adopting community policing to protect lives and property in the state, saying: “As you go out today into the society, you are expected to work with the local police authority and police your area of responsibility as indigenes of your respective communities to where you shall be deployed.”

Kokumo charged the special constables to make good use of their training and respect the fundamental right of the citizens.

Commandant of the Police Training School, Ogida, ACP Jonathan Modi, said the 877 graduates were trained on basic principles and core values of community policing, which were vital tenets in democratic policing.