The Force Headquarters has ordered the arrest and prosecution of 190 riot policemen who absconded from the ongoing training at the Special Forces School, Buni-Yadi, Yobe State, according to Premium Times, a leading online newspaper.
The fleeing policemen were part of the 2,000 Police Mobile Officers mobilised for the training preparatory to their deployment for combat against Boko Haram insurgents in the North-East.
They were deployed by the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, about three weeks ago for purely military duties under the ‘Operation Lafiya Dole.’
The Police authorities had argued that the deployment of the men was consistent with Section 4 of the Police Act and Regulations, which allows them to perform such military duties both within and outside Nigeria as may be required of them.
The 190 missing cops were believed to have baled out of the SFS because they did not want to participate in the counter-insurgency operations.
Findings indicate that the policemen were drawn from MOPOL (2), Keffi (3), Enugu (5), Benin (8), Jos (11), Calabar (16), Abeokuta.
Others were from MOPOLs 17, Akure; 18, Owerri; 19, Port Harcourt; 20/22, Ikeja; 23,Keffi Str.; 26, Uyo; 28,Umuahia; 30, Yenagoa; 31, Asaba; 32, Abakaliki; 35 Dutse; 39, Ogbomoso; 43 Lion Building; 50, Kubwa; 51, Oghara; 54, Onitsha and 56 Ogoni.
A Police wireless message with reference DTO:241610/12/2018 sighted by our (Premium Times) correspondent on Wednesday, signed by the Commissioner of Police in charge MOPOL, directed that the errant operatives should be arrested and produced under escort.
Checks showed that over 120 of the absconded officers were Sergeants while the rest included some Inspectors and a few Corporals.
No missing policeman on Boko Haram frontline – NPF
However, in a swift reaction, the Nigerian Police Force (NPF) has described as fake news the story about 167 policemen absconding from duties on the Boko Haram frontline in Nigeria’s north east.
The police said all the 2000 Policemen deployed to the region have all reported and are on ground for combat operation in the region, fighting alongside the Military.
Contrary to the fake news report, the men are in high morale and high spirit in the operation.
The attention of the Nigeria Police Force has been drawn to a story by Premium Times Online media, captioned “167 POLICE OFFICERS ABSCOND FROM DEPLOYMENT AGAINST BOKO HARAM (FULL LIST)”.
- The Force wishes to categorically state that the story is untrue, absolute falsehood and a deliberate attempt to cast aspersions on the efforts of the Nigeria Police Force in the ongoing fight against the Boko Haram insurgency.
- The insinuation in some quarters and as reported in the story that 167 out the 2000 additional Police Officers recently deployed by the IGP absconded is not correct and should be disregarded by members of the public. These 2000 Police personnel are to complement the efforts of the Military to add new impetus to the fight against the decimated Boko Haram insurgency.
- This story was investigated and it was found out not to be correct, there is no reason whatsoever that Police personnel deployed for the operations in the North East would abscond. The Police Mobile Force (PMF) personnel have been engaged actively in the front line along with the Military in the fight against Boko Haram terrorist group since the inception of the insurgency.
- These 2000 Police Officers recently deployed are in addition to several thousands of Police Personnel already engaged in the fight against insurgency with the Military in the North East. The list of 167 names attached to the story is fake as the Officers mentioned are on ground in the North East.