Journalists, police officers in narrow escape as rain wreaks havoc at reception for IGP Usman Baba in Lagos

IGP Usman Baba

Journalists, police officers and others ran for cover on Wednesday as heavy rain and storm disrupted a reception for Inspector-General of Police Usman Baba at the headquarters of the Lagos Police Command.

IGP Baba arrived at the command at about 1:40 pm and was only able to take the national anthem before the downpour started.

Wind blew up all the canopies erected, forcing the IGP, Lagos Police Commissioner Hakeem Odumosu and other senior officers to run to the conference room while others and journalists sought safety elsewhere.

Baba arrived Lagos at 10:00 am He visited Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu at the Lagos House, Marina, and the Oba Rilwan Akiolu before coming to the command headquarters at about 1:40 pm.

On arrival at the command, he met briefly with some senior officers at the conference room before coming to address other senior officers, including area commanders, DPOs, squadron commanders before the rain started

IGP Baba later briefed the press, where he pointed out the areas that needed to be improved on by his men.

He listed them to include crowd control, which he said should be done by policemen according to the norms of discharging their responsibilities.

“There is the need to also control the use of arms. Officers should lecture their men that once they are assigned rifles, there is a time and reason for their use. You need to guard them and use them responsibly.

“We must also be civil in discharging our responsibilities. Never should we allow our stations to be overrun to the extent that we will not be able to handle situations because of cowardice or lack of professionalism,” he said.

Baba added that the police were working toward the rehabilitation and reconstruction of barracks and effective housing scheme project which would serve as retirement homes for officers after service.

In his remark, Mr Odumosu said that Lagos had been calm and relatively peaceful as crime and criminality had been suppressed.

He stressed that the command was able to arrest 2,228 suspects connected with offences ranging from armed robbery, cultism, murder, hooliganism and defilement/rape in the state.

Odumosu, however, solicited the assistance of the IGP in the rehabilitation of Police facilities that were burnt during the #EndSARS protests.

He stressed that the damaged facilities had affected the operations of the command in tackling crime.

“We lost six personnel. 16 Police stations and 13 police posts were set ablaze then. Similarly, 106 Police personnel were injured while 62 patrol vehicles were burnt and some others vandalised,” he said.