By EMMANUEL UDOM
Policing Lagos is one serious experience for the law enforcement agents. It is normal and not limited to the state alone. All over the world, the business of tackling crime is unpredictable, deadly, sophisticated and therefore dangerous.
Criminals live amongst us, in our compound, community, state and the nation. Therefore, it is our business to partner with the police and other security agents in ensuring that our lives and properties are safe.
Robbery, murder, burglary, assassination, fraud, scam, kidnapping, 419, duping are some of the tag words on crime that readily come to mind as I write this article.
In the last one month or so, Allvoices has been busy looking at crime trends in Lagos, south-west Nigeria. We are actually starting from Lagos with the mind of going nationwide with time.
Lagos has an estimated population of about 10 million people. I say estimated, because it may actually be more than this. Therefore, it is not easy for about 23, 000 police officers serving in the state to effectively police all the nooks and crannies of the state.
Also, there are about 98 police divisions in Lagos with divisional police officers manning each station. It is clear that the internationally accepted standards of people: police ratio of 1000:1 may take sometimes to achieve in Nigeria.
This is because the police is ill-equipped, even as Muhammed Abubakar, the inspector-general of police is working real hard to secure the country and the people.
However, four major guidelines were used in sampling public opinion on the performance or otherwise of some divisional police officers in Lagos. These are:
1 Opinion of residents of an area on the performances of police.
2 Crime statistics sourced from the office of the Lagos state police public relations officer.
3 informal interactions with some police officers, activists, crime reporters, etc.
4 Media reports on crime trends in Lagos.
Based on our findings, we have identify 7 top performing DPOs in Lagos, who need encouragement from all the stakeholders involved in the serious, deadly, sophisticated and unpredictable business of check-mating criminalities in the former capital of Nigeria.
This actually is not limited to these officers only, as you, our dear reader should feel free to tell us how the DPO in your area is performing, especially if you are resident in Lagos.
1 CSP ADEGOKE FAYOADE- Victoria Island
He is the divisional police officer of bar beach police station. A very quite and reserved person. But, extremely effective and proactive in tackling crimes in the area.
The area is made up of 70% commercial and 30% residential, where the high and mighty in our society either resides or does business.
Therefore, there is poor neighbor- to- neighbor relationships in Victoria Island, since every person seems to be holed up inside his or her palatial home or business empire.
Research and documents available at the police and NDLEA offices show that the so-called big time crimes are recorded in this area.
Some of these are-drug pushing, high level and well coordinated fraud, scams and advance fee fraud, commonly called in local parlance 419, traffic petty thieves.
But, Fayoade, who was re-deployed from Ajao estate police station to bar beach seems to have gone a step ahead of potential criminals in the area. Independent checks show that under-cover police officers have virtually taken over banks, companies and streets in the area.
2 W/SP AISHA HARUNA- IKOYI
Shy, quite and very respectful woman police officer. However, she is a master strategist, when it comes to the deadly business of fighting crimes around Ikoyi.
No wonder she has manned Ikoyi police station for years and has reduced crime to a very minimal level.
Some of the crime trends in Victoria Island also apply to Ikoyi, since it is also regarded as area for the powerful, wealthy and famous persons in Nigeria.
Ikoyi is about 40% residential and 60% commercial. This area is where the famous special anti-fraud unit of the police, Marine police unit, Lagos office of EFCC and zone police headquarters is located.
3 CSP MONDAY AGBONIKA-Adeniyi Adele
Tried, tested and experienced crime-buster. He knows his onions, when it comes to handling complex crime issues.
Observation shows that Lagos Island used to be one hell of a place, where areas boys or hoodlums made themselves available to be used by some politicians and community leaders to foment trouble.
It used to be hotspot for violence, bloodbath and other criminal activities. As at last week when our reporter visited the area the place seems to be recording fewer crimes.
So, in the past, Lagos Island used to be really hot and explosive. Today, relative peace is slowly, but surely returning to the area.
A resident of the area, Honourable Fayemi expressed his gratitude to the Lagos state police command for posting Agbonika to Adeniyi Adele.
This may seem to be praise singing by the honorable, but Lagos police public relations officer confirmed this during a chat with our reporter on Thursday.
4 SP BODE OJAJUNI-Bode Thomas
If there is one police officer that is an aluta, so to say, that person is Bode Ojajuni. Blunt, open, factual, painstaking and thorough in his dealings.
He is the former police public relations officer for Lagos state police command and has served at the headquarters in various positions before his re-deployment to Bode Thomas police station.
Like every other areas in the state, the jurisdiction under Bode Thomas police station is a semi-high density areas, with about 70% residential and 30% commercial.
Therefore, the peculiar crimes around these areas are the violence activities of some areas boys, especially around the slum areas near Adelabu, Masha, etc.
Robbery, burglary, cyber-criminal activities, violence, especially around the national stadium areas, etc are some of the crimes peculiar around Bode Thomas
These could be verified from police records at the PPRO office at Ikeja GRA, Lagos.
5 SP GBOLAHAN OLUGBEMI-Ilupeju
Olugbemi is a very blunt and down-to -earth police officer. He is one officer that has the capacity to call a spade a spade, no matter whose ox is gored.
Crime wise, he is tried, tested and experienced. Since he resumed at Ilupeju police station, the area has recorded low crime rate. Even Alhaji Lateef Jakande, former governor of Lagos state attested to this recently.
6 CSP OLIVER AMAECHI-Isokoko
Isokoko area in Agege is a densely populated area. Infact, it is a slum or what some persons like to call a ghetto. However, since Ameachi was re-deployed from Ajao estate police station to the area, crime and criminalities have been reduced to a minimal level. Check the records at the police officer
Isokoko police station is actually the place the British government has chosen to for the flagging off of the community policing project. So, as I write this, there are British citizens in Isokoko, interacting with the residents and educating them on negative consequences of crime to themselves, the community, the state and the entire country.
7 CSP AUGUSTINE AKIKA-Ikotun
Akika is fair, friendly, but brutal when it comes to tackling criminals around Ikotun. He has succeeded dislodging okada riders around Ikotun bus-stop round about, kept local land speculators at bay and ensure that the entire place has relatively low crime rate.
The famous Synagogue church of all nations with Pastor T. B Joshua is located in Ikotun. Therefore, the police have to pay particular attention to the place, since people travel from parts of the world to visit the church for one reason or the other.Pay an independent visit to the area to confirm this for yourself.
In the days ahead, we will get to write about some other performing DPOs in Lagos, as well as look at top dirtiest or cleanest stations in the state.