Wednesday 28 November 2012

Groups plan assessment of 200 police stations

Nigeria Police Force logo
Human rights organisations will between December 3 and 9, visit 200 police stations in 14 states to assess among other things the detention centres and quality of services in them.
Members of the group are Altus Global Alliance, CLEEN Foundation, Friedrich Ebert Foundation and Justice 4 All.
They will visit police stations in Abia, Anambra, Akwa Ibom; Enugu; Federal Capital Territory; Imo, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Lagos, Niger, Rivers and Zamfara states.
The stations will be assessed based on international laws and protocols on policing and human rights.
Addressing journalists on the planned visit on Wednesday, in Abuja, Country Director, Justice 4 All, Bob Arnot, said the essence was to ensure accountability in the police.
According to him, the visit will enable local community groups to visit police stations and assess the quality of services delivered in them as well as to identify best practices used by police.
He said, “The programme relies on planned annual visits by community groups to their local police stations. They join people around the world to visit and and review their local police stations using a simple assessment tool kit composed of 20 questions based on five indicator areas drawn from international laws and protocols on policing and human rights.”
Deputy Force Public Relations Officer, Frank Mba, a Chief Superintendent of Police, on the occasion, said the Nigeria Police had been participating in the programme since 2006.
He added that the force had benefitted from the project in human rights protection and knowledge.
Also, the regional representative of AGA and deputy executive director, CLEEN Foundation, Mrs. Kemi Okenyodo, said the visit would further bring the activities and the operations of the police to the public domain.

Expert says FG not serious in equipping Police to fight Boko Haram

A criminologist and member of the Cleen Foundation, Innocent Chukwuma on Tuesday said the Federal government is not serious in equipping the police with the required arsenal to combat crimes and terrorism in Nigeria.
Mr Chukwuma, who was a guest on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, wondered why it is taking the Federal government so much time to produce a white paper on the report of the Presidential Committee on the Reorganisation of the Nigeria Police which was submitted on Tuesday August 14, 2012.
He said: “While the committee is sitting to draw up the white paper, we saw last week Wednesday and Thursday, the Minister of Police Affairs brought in Accenture Management group to come up with some fancy slides about road map in reforming the police.
“We are asking on what basis is this map since the white paper has not come out. Could it be that because the Ministry was recommended for scrapping in the Perry Osayende report that he wanted to come up with a parallel thing?”
The criminologist said this move by the Ministry of Police Affairs gives a hint that there is no coordination and seriousness by the government in fighting crime and terrorism in Nigeria.




On behalf of the Altus Global Alliance and its member organization in Nigeria, CLEEN Foundation, the Nigeria Police Force, National Human Rights Commission, Friedrich Ebert Foundation and Justice 4 All, warmly welcome you all to this press briefing, which is being organized to publicly announce the commencement of this year's edition of the Altus's Annual Police Station Visitors Week (PSVW).

About Altus
Altus is an alliance of 6 non-governmental organizations and academic centers in five continents, created in 2004 to promote safety and justice around the world from a multicultural perspective. These organizations are:

1.      Centre for Studies on Public Safety, Santiago, Chile
2.      Centre for studies on Public Security and Citizenship, Rio De Janeiro, Brazil
3.      CLEEN Foundation, Lagos, Abuja, and Imo
4.      Institute for Development Communication, Chandigarh, India
5.      INDEM Foundation, Moscow
6.      Vera institute of Justice, New York

One of the focal point of Altus's work is Police Accountability and since 2006 Altus Global Alliance has been carrying out the Altus Police Station Visitors’ Week in different countries across the 5 continents. Together, these organizations offer a greater capacity to work across matters on issues of safety and justice and a larger role for the civil society in advancing justice from a multicultural perspective.

What is PSVW all about?

The Altus annual Police Station Visitors' Week (PSVW) is an international program that is organized to facilitate local community groups visiting police stations and assessing the quality of services delivered by police departments, to identify best practices used by police and to strengthen the accountability of police to the local community.

The program relies on planned annual visits by community groups to their local police stations. They join with people around the world to visit and review their local police stations by using a simple assessment tool kit composed of 20 questions based in 5 indicator areas. The indicator areas are drawn from international laws and protocols on policing and human rights. By participating in the visits participants are overseeing and improving police services. The information they gather from during the visits are uploaded on to an innovative web- based model which simultaneously generates as a database.

For many of the visitors especially those who are female, poor, or marginalized for other reasons the experience provides their first real access to local law enforcement and a platform for expressing their views about whether the police are serving all members of their community. The visitors use the PSVW Tool Kit to guide their visit, following protocols that are the same for visits around the world.

The PSVW Tool Kit includes a simple scoring system that allows each individual to assess each station in 20 areas, producing scores on five categories of service: 1) Community Orientation, 2) Physical Condition, 3) Equal Treatment of the Public, 4) Transparency and Accountability, and 5) Detention Conditions.

Immediately after each visit, participants answer a series of questions about what they observed. Their answers are later collected and uploaded to the Altus website. Using the ratings supplied by the visitors, the Altus website will calculate an overall score for each station and separate scores into five categories of service. Police stations that receive the highest overall scores will later be recognized with an award at a forum where it will share with colleagues information about its winning practices. The Inspector General of Police and Commissioners of Police in the participating states will receive a summary of the scores of the participating police stations, this would directly help them enhance, modify or change the strategies of engagement and interaction with groups within the communities the police serve. The program does not seek to “shame and blame” any participating police department, but only provides score information to participating stations and visitors.

PSVW provides a unique platform for police departments to establish better relationships with their host communities by receiving valuable and difficult to obtain feedback from community members on where services lag, and how to improve the quality of services available. In the same aphorism, as part of a global program, visitors are able to place their individual judgments about the quality of police service at their own police stations in national, regional, and global contexts.

PSVW 2012 Edition

PSVW 2012 edition is scheduled to take place from the 3rd December – 9th December, 2012. A total of 7 confirmed countries participating in the African continent. These are:

1.      Benin
2.      Cameroon
3.      Ghana
4.      Kenya
5.      Liberia
6.      Nigeria
7.      Sierra Leone
8.      Gambia

In the Gambia, the police have indicated interest to be part of the visit however we are still waiting for confirmation from civil society groups to want to visit the police stations in the Gambia. Burundi has indicated interest to be part of the visit in 2013. We are awaiting confirmation from Malawi, South Africa and Tanzania.

This year we are aiming to mobilize more women, low income, religious, ethnic minority and other marginalized / vulnerable groups to participate in the visits.

PSVW 2012 in Nigeria

In Nigeria the visits would take place in Abia, Anambra, Akwa Ibom, Enugu, Federal Capital Territory, Imo, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Lagos, Niger, Rivers and Zamfara. We are expecting to visit over 200 police stations spread across the identified police commands. In January 2013 we would release the results of the visits and the top 5 police stations among the participating Police Commands would be announced.

We would like to use this opportunity to invite representatives of the media to be part of the visits considering the pivotal role they play in enhancing police accountability and fostering police community relationship in the country.

We also use the opportunity to appreciate those that have made the PSVW a reality. The National Human Rights Commission for providing the facilties for the sensitization and training of police officers and visitors, funding support for Nigeria is being provided by Justice For All (J4A) and Frederick Ebert Stiftung (FES), the Nigeria Police Force like other police organizations that have taken the decision to open their doors to the visitors – this is an indication of commitment to working closely with their communities. We thank you all for taking out time out of your busy schedules to grace this press briefing, thank you all for coming.

‘Kemi Okenyodo
Regional Representative
Altus Global Alliance

Monday 26 November 2012

Invitation to Participate in the Altus Police Station Visitors' Week, 2012

CLEEN Foundation would be organising the Altus Police Station Visitors' Week 2012 from the 3rd - 9th Dec 2012 in 13 States and FCT spread across the country. The participating states are 

1. Kano
2. Jigawa
3. Lagos
4. Enugu
5. Niger
6. Kaduna
7. Zamfara
8. Katsina
9. Anambra
10. Rivers
11. Imo
12. Abia
13. Akwa Ibom
14. FCT. 

The PSVW is an annual event in which citizen groups assess their local police stations, coordinated globally to produce comparable scores on five dimensions of police service. These assessments help improve police services. The scores allow identification of effective practices and the process evolves stakeholder coalitions to help bridge citizen access to accountable and transparent police services which Altus partners will help to strengthen as part of ongoing collaborations. 

The visit has been ongoing since 2006 and Nigeria has participated since inception. This year the following countries would be participating in Africa – Benin, Burundi, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Cameroon, Kenya, Malawi, Gambia.

For further information please contact: Abuja – Simon Shanew 08135591138, Imo – Ifeanyi Anyanwu – 08033582275 and Lagos – Blessing Abiri – 08033463309.

Friday 23 November 2012

Altus Police Station Visitors' Week 2012 Training Schedule For Nigeria

1. Press Conference to Flag off the PSVW 2012 on Wednesday 28th November, 2012 @ FHQ by 9:00am 

2. Sensitisation for the Police in the FCT Thursday 29th @ National Human Rights Commission by 9:00am 

3. Sensitisation for Police Officers in Lagos @ the Lagos State Police Command on Monday 26th November 2012 by 3pm. 

4. Training of Visitors in the FCT on Thursday 28th November 2012 @ NHRC by 12pm. 


Assumta Pastoral Centre, Wetheral Road, Owerri.
Alu Suites, No. 3 Kala Road (Near Kala Police Station), by Kala busstop, Ikwerre Road , Port Harcourt.
Kolping Society, World Bank Housing Estate, Umuahia.
Akwa Ibom
Summit Complex Hotels, 97 Udo Umana Street, Uyo
CRUDANSE/ Dear Africa, No. 4 / 8 Anyaegbunem streeet Adjacent
to MTN office off Zik Avenue Unwani Enugu.
Gelly Garden and Resort, Sectariate Road, Aroma, Awka

Thursday 1 November 2012

Civil Society panel calls for inclusive police force

One of such findings by the CSOs include consulting the people and their priorities factored into the reform process so that their support for reform programmes can be guaranteed

Community support and participation are critical to improving police performance and confronting the insecurity in the country, Innocent Chukwuma, the Executive Director of CLEEN Foundation, has said.
Chukwuma, who represented the Civil Society Organisation in Nigeria, revealed during a media presentation in Lagos State that a panel on police reform organised the by Civil Society Organisations in Nigeria have discovered the multidimensional problems facing the police and how to make the police function optimally.
One of such findings by the CSOs include consulting the people and their priorities factored into the reform process so that their support for reform programmes can be guaranteed.
He said: “Official debates about police reform in Nigeria and committees established by successive governments to facilitate such discussions and recommendations of measures for implementation have mostly been dominated by people with a security background who view such assignments as their exclusive preserve.
“As a result, their reports have often focussed on increasing policing capacity in the areas of personnel strength, materials for work and welfare, as though once these are right, the NPF will be super effective and efficient.
“While not belittling the significant difference a properly resourced NPF can make in addressing the safety and security challenges currently confronting Nigeria, experience from other jurisdictions has shown that it requires more than this for the police to win.”
In order to bridge the gap in ensuring a working police reform programme, the CSOs decided to set up a parallel but complementary Civil Society Panel on Police Reform in Nigeria.
Ayo Obe chaired the six-person panel, whose other members are Josephine Effah-Chukwuma, Sampson Itodo, Dr. Abubakar Mu’azu, Ayisha Osori and Dr. Smart Otu.
Chukwuma provided technical advice, Chinedu Nwagu served as the Secretary and Okechukwu Nwanguma served as the CSO liaison officer.
In its work, the CSO Panel paid more attention to salient issues that may not necessarily require a great deal of money before they can be addressed, but are often ignored in the work of government committees on police reform.
However, the CSO Panel recognised the impact of material deficiencies on the effectiveness of the NPF and aligns with reports of government committees on such issues.
Factors affecting police effective performance that were identified by the panel include inadequate articulation of the NPF’s mission, legal framework, specialisation of functions, performance appraisal system, duplication of policing agencies, weak oversight agencies and corruption.
Chukwuma said: “The Panel found the mission statement of the NPF as provided in Section 4 of the Police Act inadequate in capturing the expectation of the new kind of police Nigeria requires in the context of its disheartening experience of police inefficiency and brutality and hope for a democratic society of security and liberty. In proposing a new mission statement for the NPF the CSO Panel is of the view that focus should be on modelling a new police service that works in partnership with the communities it serves.”
In one of its recommendations, the panel stated that the National Assembly should “Amend Section 215(3) of the Constitution and sections 9(4, 5) and 10(1, 2) of the Police Act to restrict the role of the President or Minister of Government acting on his behalf to issuing only lawful policy directives, not operational directives, to the NPF. The amendment should state clearly and unambiguously that operational control of the NPF and its department/units rests with the IGP.
“Sections 215(1) and 216(2) of the Constitution should be amended as part of the present constitutional reform process to:
“Provide for a competitive and transparent process to be followed in the appointment of an IGP if the position becomes vacant, including an open application process, screening of applicants, Senate hearing and confirmation of the most competent person for the job.”
Other recommendations by the Panel included:
That the “NPF structure should be decentralised and powers and resources devolved to Zonal, State, Area and Divisional Commands to enable them effectively respond to the priority safety and security needs of their jurisdictions.
· The seven DIG structure should be abolished, and the IGP should have just one DIG who should serve as his second in command. The headquarter departments should be headed by AIGs in the same way as Zonal Commands.
“The CSO Panel found that the NPF has turned most police officers in Nigeria into ‘jacks-of-all-trades’ who in the end, are not able to master any. The ‘general duty policy’ should be abolished. Every police officer should be given a time line of five years to specialise after recruitment, be a promotable officer or go home. Diverse professionals such as criminologists, psychologists, sociologists, lawyers, doctors, pathologists and others should be recruited as police officers and allowed to practice their professions within the police service, and be promotable in their areas of expertise as is done in services such as the military.”

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