By Ejike Ejike, Abuja
The Inspector General of Police, IGP Ibrahim Idris, has called for stringent punishment for kidnappers and terrorists to check the menace of kidnappings and terrorism in Nigeria.
The IGP, who made the call at the Force Headquarters in Abuja on Wednesday during a meeting with Commissioners of Police and above, lamented the frustration of the police in handling issues of kidnapping and terrorism, also called for the review of the kidnapping and terrorism Acts to ensure expedient trial.
He said that some of the kidnap suspects enjoyed freedom more than law abiding Nigerians.
The IGP cited the example of neighbouring Niger Republic where the prosecution and conviction of kidnap and terrorism suspects were being given expeditious attention.
According to him, “we have not seen where kidnap suspects were convicted and jailed for committing the offence. Imagine what happened in Niger, where terrorists where caught, tried and executed within a short while? If this happen in Nigeria, it will reduce the rate of kidnapping and terrorism.
“Some states in the country which have enacted laws to punish convicts with death penalties have not executed them.”
He also enjoined them to encourage outstanding officers by recommending them for promotion and announced a posthumous promotion for Insp. Idris Musa, who was killed in a shootout with the remnants of Boko Haram terrorists in Kano.
Musa was a member of the Inspector-General of Police Joint Police Special Team.
He urged them to re-validate all deployments carried out before now to effectively check officers engaged in illegal duties and extortion.
“You have to set up an X-squad to check illegal deployment and extortion by officers in your commands. It is very embarrassing to read in the media how officers harass innocent citizens. As commanders we must be very effective to check illegal duties,”he said.
The IGP urged police commissioners of Niger and Kaduna states to engage community and religious leaders to sensitise the people on kidnapping on that route.