The Anambra State Commissioner of Police, CP Echeng Echeng has called for for the enthronement of trust and effective partnership between police and communities in tackling the menace of crime and criminality in Anambra State.
The CP made the call at a meeting of the Anambra State Police Stakeholders Partnership Forum (PSPF) held in Awka, the Anambra State capital on Wednesday.
He called on communities in Anambra state to forge an alliance with the police to establish an environment of trust and mutual respect for the wellbeing of man and the society.
He said such engagement would amount to the elimination of crime and criminality that had ravage the state, the southeast and the country at large.
The CP who addressed the keynote on: “Community Engagement a Key to Effective Police Performance,” said “Police must actively cultivate the trust of the community and refrain from acts that endangers trust as confidence once broken will be difficult to regain.”
He also said “communities too must endeavour not to abuse this trust. When individuals give false information aimed at achieving selfish objectives, it erodes the mutual trust.
The CP who said partnership is another relevant tool of tackling insecurity, noted that “both sides must understand that they need each other and that a partnership built on mutual respect must be forged in the interest of the community. It is only in an ambience of partnership that problems confronting communities can be holistically addressed and ultimately solved.
“Selflessness is when Police watch out for the good of the community and the community reciprocate same. Doing otherwise endangers both the Police and the Community.
“It is not enough for the Police to be willing to engage the Community it serves. There is need for the community to be interested in partnering with the Police amd where both parties are disposed to forging a partnership that works, the society is the better for it.”
The CP assured that the Police will continue to make itself accountable in the administration of Criminal Justice in the state and commended the PSPF and RULAAC for their roles in to forging a partnership that enthroned access to justice in the state.
Earlier, the Executive Director Rule of Law and Accountability Advocacy Centre, (RULAAC), Okechukwu Nwanguma, commended the Nigerian Police for for their doggedness and courage in service especially during the period of EndSARS protest.
He called on the federal government to increase its support to the police to enable them be more effective in the discharge of their constitutional mandates of service and protection of the citizens.
Explaining its role, Anambra State Coordinator of PSPF, Prince Chris Azor said the platform was one of the outcomes of the assessment conducted by RULAAC, in partnership with the NPF and with support from the Open Society Justice Initiative (OSJI). He said it was established to serve as a mechanism for holding NPF personnel to account for rights violations, while growing skills and awareness to ensure prevention and reduction of such violations.
He said the intervention included capacity building for citizens, sensitization, enlightenment and establishment of the PSPF as a stakeholders’ platform to monitor compliance by the NPF with the ACJL.
Highpoint of the meeting was the conferment of award of honour to former Commissioner of Police and Assistant Inspector General of Police, AIG John Abang for his Police-Citizens engagements and professional standards while acting as CP in the state.
Also recognised with honors were CSP Haruna Abubakar, former Public Relations Officer, Anambra Police Command; and CSP Rabiu Garba for community engagement, courage and professional service in the state.