COVID-19: IGP unveils new operational guidelines for Police, other security agencies   

• reels-out measures to deal with emerging incidents of gender-based violence  ​

The Inspector-General of Police, IGP Mohammed Abubakar Adamu on Monday unveiled new operational guidelines for the Police and other Law Enforcement Agencies on COVID-19 prevention enforcement duties.

This was contained in a statement made available to newsmen in Abuja by the Force Public Relations Officer, FPRO,  Frank Mba, a Deputy Commissioner of Police DCP.

He stated that this was part of measures to foster a more harmonious relationship between the Police and members of the public, deepen respect for the rights of citizens, provide a new set of policing tools for tackling emerging crimes such as domestic violence, rape, child molestation and other incidents of Gender-Based Violence (GBV).

The IGP expressed deep concern over the alarming increase in reported cases of domestic violence, rape, defilement, cybercrimes etc linked with the COVID-19 restrictions.

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According to him, “these unfortunate incidents have prompted the introduction of this operational guideline which will help to adequately coordinate and reshape the conducts of personnel of the Force and other law enforcement agencies on the frontline of operations in the enforcement of the COVID-19 prevention orders.

“It will also serve as a standard code of conduct for Police officers in similar operations in the future.

The IGP consequently ordered the strengthening of the Gender-Desk Units and the Juvenile Welfare Centres (JWCs) across the country and the deployment of investigative assets to deal with gender-related offences.

He said that in addition, the Cybercrime Unit of the Force has also been strengthened to deal with cybercrimes connected with the COVID-19 pandemic.

The IGP also directed the Assistant Inspectors-General of Police and Commissioners of Police in Zonal and State Commands as well as Heads of Police Departments/Formations to make the Guidelines subject of departmental briefings and lectures.

According to him, the operational guidelines will also serve as a training manual in all Police training institutions across the country.

The IGP equally charged the Force Provost Department, the X-Squad, the Force Public Relations Department, the Complaint Response Unit and the Public Complaint Bureau to carry out their oversight roles of adequate evaluation and monitoring of officers to ensure compliance with the guidelines and bring erring personnel to book.

He also enjoined citizens to cooperate with the Police and other Law Enforcement Officers (LEOs) as all hands were on deck to curtail and contain COVID-19 in the country.

The IGP expressed profound appreciation to the Executive Director, CLEEN Foundation and the representative of the British High Commission for their contributions and presence during the unveiling of the Operational Guidelines and commended all other corporate organisations who supported the Police in the publication of the booklet.

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