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Thursday, April 18, 2024

The Chronicle of Adeoye’s First Week As Anambra New Police Commissioner

 

By Izunna Okafor, Awka

In a remarkable display of determination and commitment to combat crime and insecurity, the newly-appointed Commissioner of Police (CP) for Anambra State Police Command, CP Aderemi Adeoye, has achieved significant milestones in the State within his first week in office. Since his assumption of office on July 10, 2023, CP Aderemi Adeoye has embarked on a relentless campaign to restore peace and security in the state.

Upon landing in Anambra State (which, of course is his 4th missionary journey in the State, having earlier served for over ten in different capacities years in the State); CP Adeoye wasted no time in getting down to work. After being officially received at the State’s Police Headquarters, Amawbia, by the officers of the Command, he embarked on a courtesy visit to the Government House, where he registered his presence and also discussed his plans and strategies with the state government officials.

Recall that the State Government, under Governor Chukwuma Charles Soludo, has a vision to make Anambra State a liveable and prosperous homeland, as well as a first-choice destination for investors. This visit by the CP showcased his commitment to collaboration and a united front towards achieving this great vision of the Governor through a sustained fight against crime and insecurity in Anambra.

Recognizing the importance of collaboration among security agencies, CP Adeoye has actively sought greater cooperation to enhance security in Anambra State. He proves to understand that collective efforts are crucial in maintaining law and order, hence his visits to the Heads of some security agencies in the State shortly after his arrival. In company of the hard-working Police Public Relations Officer in the State, DSP Ikenga Tochukwu and other senior officers of the Command, the Commissioner visited the Heads of Department of State Services (DSS), Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corps (NSCDC), and National Drug Laws Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), all in Awka.

He also visited the Catholic Bishop of Awka Diocese, Bishop Paulinus Ezeokafor, among other stakeholders he has visited. Through this fostering of interagency partnerships, CP Adeoye aims to bolster the overall security landscape of the state, ensuring the safety and well-being of its residents.

By the time CP Adeoye held his maiden press conference with newsmen on Wednesday (two days after his assumption of office), testimonies already abounded, of the achievements of the Command under his watch.

Right there before the newsmen at the press conference were the bodies of two kidnap syndicate neutralized on July 11, through the joint efforts of the police and the local vigilante at Ichida, in Anaocha Local Government Area of the State. Also paraded before the newsmen that day were one Ak47 rifle, two pump action gun, two Ak47 magazine, thirty-two live ammunition recovered from the kidnappers; as well as one highlander jeep belonging to the victim of the kidnap who was rescued unhurt from the hands of the deadly gang of eight.

The CP, that day, also showed the newsmen a highlander jeep and a white Lexus 350 without plate number, two automatic pump action guns, eleven live cartridges, and a bag containing one walkie-talkie, one cell phone, and other incriminating items abandoned along the Uga-Ezinifite Expressway by gunmen who were engaged in a gun duel by the police. All these happened just one day after his assumption of office.

Recall that the Police Commissioner had, shortly after his arrival, initiated awards known as the Commissioner of Police Commendation Award in Anambra State, among other exceptional reward packages to be given to officers who perform exceptionally and gallantly well in the discharge of their duties, as a means to boost their morales and encourage others to do better. This may not be far from the reasons the officers of the Command became more gallant than ever, since his arrival. During the press conference, he also emphatically stated his determination to make Anambra State a hot for criminal elements. And, since then, it has been from one achievements to another.

Some notable achievements include the capture of an 18-year-old boy and two others involved in vehicle snatching at gunpoint. The armed three-man gang snatched a tricycle from its owner in Awka, but were arrested at Neni, in Anaocha Local Government Area, through intelligence sharing and swift action of the officers of the Command. The tricycle was recovered and returned to its owner, while pistols and live cartridges were also recovered from the suspects.

In another operation, three youths who had been abducted and chained to pillars by gunmen in Okija, Ihiala Local Government Area, were rescued by the police. Arrests were made, and investigations are ongoing to ensure justice is served.

 

Furthermore, the Anambra State Police Command, under CP Adeoye’s leadership, recovered a significant quantity of 1,000 bags of cement abandoned by gunmen in a remote bush also in Okija. The trailer-load of cement was snatched from its owner in Delta State, by the the armed men who diverted it to Anambra State, but abandoned it and fled when they sighted police patrol team approaching them along the Okija axis of the Onitsha-Owerri Road. The recovery and returning of this trailer-load of cement to its rightful owner does not only signifies the disruption of criminal activities but also strengthened up the people’s confidence in the police.

In disturbing cases of child abuse, rape and other forms of sexual harassment in Anambra State, the police successfully apprehended a 41-year-old security guard who raped a 13-year-old girl, providing her with monetary compensation for biscuits in Ekwulobia, Aguata Local Government Area of the State. Ten other suspected rapists were also arrested in different parts of the State, including Ogbaru, Anam, Abagana, and other parts of the State for different rape crimes.

The Command, under CP Adeoye, also recently rescued an aged woman who was seen in a viral video being maltreated by her cruel daughter in Abagana, Njikoka Local Government Area of the State, while the daughter was also arrested.

These and many others not meant for public consumption are some of the feats so far recorded by the Anambra State Police Command under CP Adeoye.

In line with the Igbo adage that says “A na-esi n’ísì ahụ̀rụ̀ mara ụtọ nsị”, the achievements recorded under the new Commissioner within his first week in office serve as a testament to his dedication and proactive approach to law enforcement.

Recall also that, in his strong display of zero-tolerance for misconduct among the officers of the Command, CP Adeoye took swift action to address allegations of illegal arrests and extortion within the Anambra State Police Command, as he removed the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) of B Division Awka, who was accused of engaging in such activities. This sends a strong message of the CP’s commitment to upholding high standards of professionalism in the Command.

With his proactive and resolute approach, the Commissioner has set a promising precedent for the future. We, the people of Anambra State look forward to a safer and more secure environment as the Police Command, under CP Adeoye, continues to work tirelessly to protect their well-being.

Note, this is not a praise singing, but a reality that also needed to be publicized, the same way I expose and publicize the police when they go wrong. With these collective supports of ours, the police will perform better, and Anambra will become safer, liveable and prosperous, as was envisioned by His Excellency, Governor Chukwuma Soludo.

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Izunna Okafor is an Anambra-based journalist and author, with over 35 awards in journalism and creative writing.

 

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