Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode, on Saturday urged the State Police Command to step up their surveillance in the state and come up with new strategies to tackle the wave of criminal activities in the state.
The governor who spoke at the closing session of the four-day Leadership Retreat for the State Executive Council, Body of Permanent Secretaries as well as some heads of Parastatals, urged the police to improve on their mode of operations to ensure the safety of lives and property in the state.
Speaking shortly after the Commissioner of Police, Fatai Owoseni, addressed participants at the retreat, Mr Ambode pledged the support of the state government towards effective policing of the state, saying that the resources ploughed into securing the state must reflect in the reduction of criminal activities.
“We’re not yet where we want to be. We have only just 33, 000 policemen in Lagos for a population of over 20million. Again, we don’t have control over these police officers.
“We need to let the Commissioner of Police leave this retreat believing that the Police need to own their own business just the way we have told ourselves that we want to own the business of governance. We need to see some things change, there has to be some form of paradigm shift, we want to see our police officers patrol in convoy between 12 midnight and 4am.
“There should be presence; we want to show presence, security agencies must also show presence. We need to enforce, we want to see patrol vehicle moving, we don’t want to see stationery police men, they don’t have to stay in the vehicle, we want to see something different from what it used to be in the past.
“It’s still the same style, but people must see improvement on it. That’s why we on our own part, we have gone out of our budget limits, using our resources from the Security Trust Fund, to say that, yes, it might not be within our budget, but we would spend money to support the Police because if the state is safe, the economy will thrive,” he said.
Ambode also charged his team to take the lessons learnt from the retreat and make a commitment to implement them in their various ministries, departments and agencies so as to better the lot of the people of the state.
He said the resolutions reached at the retreat will be brought before the weekly State Executive Council meeting to ensure that they are implemented to the letter.
“Let us see ourselves as a team, let us own our business, show presence, speak out, go out there and win for Lagos State,” he said.
On his part, Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Steve Ayorinde, who read the resolutions reached at the retreat, said the participants agreed that the Police in conjunction with the state government will come up with a holistic and joint approach to tackle traffic robberies, cultism, street trading and menace of area boys in the state.
“Participants agreed to proffer immediate, short and long term solutions towards unlocking traffic gridlock on major roads, highways and streets in Lagos. They also agreed on the need to deploy appropriate cutting edge technologies to improve revenue generation.
“Participants urged the citizenry to embrace voluntary compliance to Government Policies, Laws and Regulations, i.e. payment of taxes, environmental and traffic regulations.
“Participants pledged to support the commitment of government to humane and civilised approach to public service delivery and enforcement of laws in the state,” Mr Ayorinde said.