Human Rights activist, Femi Falana (SAN), on Thursday called for adequate funding of the Nigeria Police Force.
Falana made the call at a training organised by the Committee for the Defence of Human Rights (CDHR) and the Lagos State Police Command for senior cops.
The Human Rights activist maintained that it would be difficult for police operatives to uphold rule of law without funds.
“There is a need to sit with the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) for sufficient money to be availed the police for diligent investigation. Close Circuit Television Cameras (CCTVs) are to be installed in all police stations.
“Police stations are supposed to be given running grants but it is not so. They are made to depend on the public to assist. This is why sometimes, it is about who pays the piper. It is not their fault but the fault of the society.
“This is why I advise people clamouring for state police that certain things must be put in place first. Is it a state that cannot pay salary that will arm its police?
“There are equipment the police can use to check if weapons are kept somewhere. This can be done through a radar. The same equipment can be used to scan vehicles even from a distance to a checkpoint and so, the police do not have to stop and start checking items.
“All these come at a cost and this is why the police must be properly funded to perform their duty. Policemen do not have to stay on the road to monitor traffic offenders.
“There are supposed to be cameras monitored from a control room. The police do not have to be on the road arguing with offenders. Anyone who commits traffic offence, should simply be posted his ticket at his residence.
“We need to let the government know that you cannot police the road without gadgets. You cannot deal with suspects without equipment. You have to be very careful and be ahead of your suspects.
“The key to the success of the police is for government to fund them adequately. When I was in Guinea Bissau, I noticed Nigeria Police men on Peacekeeping mission there performed very well. This is because they were well kitted and funded.”
Falana condemned the government for sending security operatives to fight terrorists with inadequate weapons.
The human rights lawyer also said it was the responsibility of the police to contact families of arrested suspects to notify them that their relatives were being detained.
According to Falana, such calls should be at the expense of the police, hence, another reason the agency needs more funds.
He advocated for conjugal visits and access to telephone calls for inmates, noting that visit by spouses would check issues of homosexuality, lesbianism.
Falana said the government was lucky because most Nigerians didn’t know their rights.
“You can sue the government for failing to protect your relative especially if he’s a bread winner who died during a crisis,” he added.