The shooting of a passenger by an unnamed Police inspector in Adamawa on Thursday, October 5, 2017, has brought to the fore a discussion about the necessity of Police officers carrying arms and their level of sanity.
All over the world, carrying of arms by security agencies is meant to ward off threats by criminals and other individuals capable of causing a total breakdown of law and order. Also, the guns are meant to protect the officers themselves from any harm whatsoever.
The turn of events in recent times has made the decision one that should be reviewed. Do we really need to arm our police officers or we give them sticks as it was in the past while we continue to Soldiers are left with their guns – also, the civil defence corps.
The Nigerian Police Force has many unresolved cases of murder involving its officers. Hardly will a month go by without the report of a police officer killing a harmless Nigerian. Just a few weeks ago, we all woke up to the story of a police officer that killed some people at a naming ceremony after getting drunk.
Drinking while wearing the police uniform? That only happens in Nigeria. And while we are yet to resolve that, another one happened yesterday in Adamawa over an alleged N100 bribe.
That Police officers kill for bribe is not a new development, as many families have been shattered by the death of their loved ones and bread winners through careless shooting by some police officers.
The inability of the force’ leadership to nip in the bud such acts has increased the proliferation of such ignoble acts among the force. This has made many Nigerians dread police officers while the maxim, “police is your friend” appears to them as a facade.
These unabated killings by police officers due to mishandling of arms is questioning the appropriateness of arming police officers when they will still end up killing innocent citizens with the guns purchased with taxpayers money.
Do we need to return the police to the age where they carry sticks and clubs to prevent another casualty that might occur as a result of the carelessness of trigger-happy cops?