By Mokwugwo Solomon
The new Commissioner of Police, Anambra state police command, CP John B. Abang , has vowed to tackle kidnapping, cultism and violent crimes with the attention and vigour they deserve.
Abang, who made his mission known on Thursday, during his maiden press conference at the state command headquarters, Awka, said, “On assumption of duty within the last twenty-four hours, I have been fully briefed on a few criminal and security challenges in the state at the moment. These include disputes over land, the menace of one chance robbery gangs, robbery, kidnapping and, of course, cultism.
“Undoubtedly, the command, under my predecessor, CP Mustapha Dandaura, has recorded many successes in clearing the menace of miscreants in several areas of Onitsha metropolis; the arrest and prosecution of murder and robbery suspects and the general maintenance of law and order in the state.
“In keeping with the vision of the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), IGP Mohammed Abubakar Adamu, to make Nigeria safer and more secure for economic development and growth, the command, under my watch, shall take a zero tolerance stance on crime.
“Therefore, all our efforts and energies shall be mobilised and deployed towards the prevention of crimes; and the successful apprehension of criminals that would test our resolve.”
While regretting that the command lost an operative of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) recently in an onslaught against kidnappers, the CP said the command under him would reinvigorate Operation Puff Adder and give it more bite to tackle cultism, robbery and kidnapping.
“This is a clarion call to all officers and men of the command to brace up for the task ahead. My advice to cultists, robbers and kidnappers is for them to have a rethink and purge themselves or relocate from the Anambra state,” he said, adding that despite the resolve to fight violent crimes and cultism to a standstill, efforts would be made by the command to employ Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) strategies and Community Policing Principles, where applicable and germane to specific problems and issues.
Abang further harped on extortion, /over detention and incivility to members of the public, among others, on the part of police officers, which he said, is unlawful.
He urged all personnel of the command to eschew corruption and indiscipline; adding that the command will sustain the existing inter-agency collaboration and improve its respect for the rule of law and fundamental human rights in accordance with international best practices.
He assured all Ndi Anambra, both at home and in Diaspora, that the command under his watch, would work assiduously to continue to make the state the safest in the country; while also urging the cooperation of all well meaning members of the society to ensure maximum safety and security of lives and property in the state; which, he said, will not be possible without the cooperation of all.
CP John Bassey Abang, a native of Ogoja in Cross River state, who replaces former CP, Mustapha Dandaura, who has been deployed to head the River state police command as CP.
Abang, who is the 28th substantive CP of the Anambra command, was the pioneer Squadron Commander, MOPOL 29, PMF Awka, between 1999 and 2000.
He was also the Assistant Commissioner of Police in charge of Operations Department, Anambra state command between 2009 and 2010.