President Muhammadu Buhari has approved an enhanced salary structure for the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) and given assurance that his administration will continue paying attention to the welfare and operational needs of the force.
Buhari’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, in a statement on Monday, said the president confirmed the approval in the State House, Abuja.
The president spoke when he played host to the members of the Nigeria Police Service Commission and the leadership of the force who were on a “thank you” visit to him.
By the president’s approval of the Rank Salary Structure Adjustment, salaries, allowances and pension of policemen will be increased.
Buhari expressed the commitment of his administration to restoring the NPF lost primacy in the internal security framework of the country.
He regretted that the inability of the police in performing their constitutional role as the frontline force in the prevention of crime, had led to military involvement in the maintenance of law and order throughout the country.
“From Taraba to Sokoto, to the South-South, people don’t feel secure until they see the military.
“I am pleased to make the increase in salary and allowances in the hope that it will increase the performance index of the police and strengthen Nigeria’s internal security system,” he said.
According to him, the more efficient the police is, the more confident the government and citizens will be.
He said: “The military should be reserved for higher tasks. The police should be able to cope well with the challenges of armed robbery, kidnapping for ransom and such crimes.
“In every town and village, there is the presence of the police. From all these places, they should be able to forward first class intelligence to you on which to act.”
The president said there was need to amplify the question of more men of the police, given the condition the country was currently in.
He listed the current challenges facing the nation as emergency in the North-East and pervasive insecurity and abduction for ransom and banditry in many parts of the country.
“I congratulate you on the success you recorded against criminals taxing people and stopping them from their farms. We are expecting more from you,” the president told the police leadership.
Mr Musiliu Smith, Chairman, Police Service Commission, represented by Justice Clara Ogunbiyi (rtd), had informed the president that the rank salary structure adjustment would enhance police welfare and morale.
The Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, also gave the assurance that the police would redouble efforts to ensure free, fair and credible elections throughout the country next year.