The Acting Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar, has urged traditional rulers in Imo to assist the police to curtail kidnapping and armed robbery in the state.
He made the call in Owerri on Thursday during a town hall meeting with traditional rulers and other stakeholders in Imo.
He appealed to them to assist the police to `fish out’ criminals in their domains, saying that as traditional rulers, they were expected to know the type of people residing in their areas.
Abubakar said that the top hierarchy of the police was worried over the spate of kidnapping and armed robbery in the state.
He said that his visit of the command was to fine tune its strategy to fight crimes and acquaint himself with the challenges facing the command.
According to him, traditional rulers have a `big’ role to play in reducing crimes through collaboration with the police.
He said that such cooperation would be of help to the police.
``These people (criminals) are not spirits; they live and interact with you and as traditional rulers you should know the characters of your people.
``The essence of leadership is for you to ensure peace and security in your community and any of you whose child is a criminal should be handed over to the police. ”
Abubakar told the people that the police was being repositioned to enable it to cope with the current security challenges facing the country and promised to sanction erring police officers.
Earlier, the IGP paid a courtesy call on the traditional ruler of Owerri, Eze Benjamin Njemanze and solicited his support in the fight against crime.
Njemanze called for improvement in the welfare of the police and proper equipment of the force to enable it to perform efficiently.
He also pledged to collaborate with the police to prevent crime.
In his remarks, Imo Commissioner of Police, Mr Christopher Dega, told the IGP that the command had adopted proactive measures to deal with kidnapping and armed robbery.
He said the command had engaged the services of traditional rulers and other opinion leaders in the state in community policing.
``Our relationship with the state and local governments has been very friendly and robust,” Dega said.