The Minister of Police Affairs, Mr. Muhammad Maigari Dingyadi has inaugurated the Police Public Complaints Committee (PPCC) as a permanent structure that will help to effectively nip in the bud civil unrests and serve as opportunities for Nigerians to channel their grievances on the misconduct of police personnel.
He made this known during the inauguration of the committee which comprises the Ministry of Police Affairs, Police Service Commission; Ministry of Justice; National Human Rights Commission; National Intelligence Agency; Non-Government Organization (CLEEN Foundation); Nigeria Police Force; and Police Community Relations Committee as well as Department of State Security Services (DSS) at the Ministry’s Headquarters in Abuja.
The Minister stated that this is one of several steps Mr. President took to assuage Nigeria Youths noting that the overriding objective of the PPCC is to serve as the institution that has oversight on the activities of police personnel and their interaction with the public.
In his words “It is obvious that the current habit of the public lodging complaints against police personnel at Police Stations or at various Police Commands have not given the desired solutions to aggrieved Nigerians”
He said “once the PPCC becomes operational, I will expect it to swing into action by embarking on wide publicity and sensitization campaigns to enable Nigerians to be aware of its existence and its function and thereby recognize it as a proper avenue to channel their complaints against police personnel”
Dingyadi urged the PPCC to decentralize its structure to ensure that Nigerians have easy access to it by considering opening channels of communication at all Local Government Headquarters. He added that PPCC is designed to have a Sub-committee to be known as Special Investigation Unit (SIU) that will be made up of professionals.
The Minister charged the committee to work assiduously and in a transparent manner in order to give confidence to Nigerians that their complaints will be attended to by a fair, just, and equitable system. “The Committee is not out to witch-hunt the men and officers of the Nigerian Police Force, rather it is to work in synergy with police to ensure it carries out its mandate effectively”. He stressed.
Earlier, the Permanent Secretary, Mr. Temitope Fashedemi pointed out that this is an attempt to revamp a public institution that is capable of ensuring the protection of the fundamental human rights of Nigerians adding that those who are manning public institutions are paid with public funds and are duty-bound to ensure that they operate within the ambit of the law and are guided by approved rules of engagement.
In his words, Police Public Complaints Committee is an additional layer for the protection of people’s rights whenever there seems to be an infringement on these rights or abuse of power, particularly by the police personnel in the discharge of their duties”.