Acting Inspector-General of Police, Mr. Kayode Egbetokun on Tuesday ordered Commissioners of Police and supervisory Assistant Inspectors-General of Police to engage with labour for understanding ahead of Wednesday’s protest over fuel subsidy removal.
Force Public Relations Officer ACP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, stated in Abuja that the police boss directed the officers to engage NLC leadership and that of the Trade Union Congress (TUC) in all states in fruitful discussions.
He stated that the directive was to foster understanding and reach common grounds ahead of the protest.
Adejobi quoted Egbetokun as saying that peaceful and coordinated approach was crucial to achieving meaningful solutions and preventing any form of violence or disruptions to public order, should the protests persist.
He reiterated the commitment of the police to ensure the safety and security of all citizens during the protests and assured that necessary measures to facilitate peaceful conduct of the demonstrations had been emplaced.
Egbetokun reaffirmed that any attempt by miscreants to exploit the situation for violent purposes like vandalism, gangsterism and extortion would be met with firm, professional and commensurate lawful approach.
According to him, the police will not tolerate any act that threatens the peace and well-being of the country.
“In light of the potential challenges posed by the protests, the Nigeria Police Force is fully prepared to maintain law and order and to protect the lives and property of citizens,’’ Adejobi further quoted Egbetokun as saying.
He called on officers to be vigilant; be professional and uphold the highest standards of conduct during the period of the protest.
Egbetokun also urged stakeholders, including the NLC, TUC and civil society groups to embrace dialogue as the most effective means of resolving grievances.
He pledged the commitment of the police to ensure a secured and conducive environment for dialogue, constructive engagement and mutual understanding for a seamless exercise of civil rights.