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Prof. Patrick Muoboghare, Delta’s Commissioner for Higher Education.
The #EndSARS protest by youths across Nigeria has been described as not just a protest but a national movement.
Higher Education Commissioner of Delta State, Prof. Patrick Muoboghare who spoke today, Monday October 19, 2020, at media parley with journalists of the Indigenous Correspondents’ Chapel of the Delta state council of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) in the conference room of his office at the Olorogun Felix Ibru Secretariat Annex, Maryam Babangida Way, Asaba also described the Nigerian Police system as a total failure, with a call on President Muhammadu Buhari to come out and address the nation.
Decrying the leadership of the Nigeria Police upon which he heaped the blame of an appalling policing system, Prof. Muoboghare said the problems of the police are their bosses. “The police are a failure, but the fish gets rotten from the head. The constable, corporal, the sergeant is not the problem; the problems are their bosses at the top,” he said.
He continued: “The policeman has cheapened himself, and so they have lost their souls. The policeman is not from another country; they are here with us. They are our brothers, our sisters, our fathers, our relations. The policeman needs our help.
“The governor of a state is called the chief security officer of the state, but the commissioner of Police in a state does not report to the governor. He reports to the Inspector General of Police (IGP). So, it is the IGP who directs them and calls the shot. Yet, the governor buys the police the vehicles they use and after one year, the vehicles are dilapidated, they are left without maintenance. And the police force has annual budget. It is a Federal Institution, but the Federal Government does not maintain the police.”
Muoboghare pointed for the avoidance of doubt that the #ENDSARS protest is not a youth protest. “It s a Nigerian movement; it is the protest of parents who have lost their children to the brutality of the police. It is a protest against the use of police check points to extort money with returns to the police bosses,” he said, adding: “If you have no hand in check points, if the money from check points does not get to the you, dismantle the check points.”
For him, it is despicable to send police men who are poorly paid, poorly fed, and without money to do the work of policing, that it was wrong to send them out to do the job functions without giving them money even to fuel
Muoboghare said: “The police hierarchy is a disgrace to this country. The average police man in Nigeria is an abandoned child. You give a man a delicate assignment and you pay him poorly, you don’t feed him; because of the poor pay the policeman has no self esteem. The police are a failure, but the fish gets rotten from the head.”
He recall once upon a time that a popular Nigerian athlete was shot dead by a policeman, and nothing came out of it. He pointed out that it was not just the athlete that was killed but by implication the parents of the man, because the deceased will not be able to discharge his responsibility of catering for his old parents in future.
He urged President Buhari to urgently address the nation, see things from the point of view of the protesters so that the protesters can call of the protests. “This is what is expected of the president because Nigerians are aggrieved; the protest is a bottled up anger. This is not a PDP , APC matter. It is not just a protest, it is a National movement supported also by aggrieved parents who have lost their children to the brutality of the police,” Muoboghare said.