READ THE FULL REMARKS BY THE INSPECTOR-GENERAL OF POLICE, IGP, MOHAMMED A. ADAMU, NPM, mni, AT THE OPENING CEREMONY OF A 4-DAY CAPACITY BUILDING WORKSHOP FOR POLICE PUBLIC RELATIONS OFFICERS, ON TUESDAY, 8TH OCTOBER, 2019, IN AWKA, ANAMBRA STATE.
It is my pleasure to welcome you all to this very important occasion which is the opening ceremony of a 4-day intensive capacity building Workshop for Police Public Relations Officers in Nigeria, comprising of the Police Public Relations Officers from the 36 States of the Federation, the FCT, 12 Zonal Police Public Relations Officers as well as Staff Officers of the Force Public Relations Department, Force Headquarters, Abuja.
The Workshop is part of my Administration’s commitment to the enhancement of capacity of officers whose primary responsibility it is to manage the image and information dissemination process towards repositioning the Nigeria Police and changing the uninformed perceptions and faulty narratives about the Nigeria Police Force. This is with a view to rebranding the Force, advancing our fortunes, and restoring our primacy within the internal security architecture of the Nation.
Unarguably, certain indiscretions and perceived inactions by some personnel of the Force as well as the security challenges in some parts of the country impact negatively on the image of the Force. This reality coupled with the dynamic nature of crime, rapidly advancing information and communication technology, and the changing policing environment that we deal with in the line of our duty have combined to redefine both the concept of policing and the perception of the police by the citizens. Indeed, experts have asserted that there is an intertwining relationship between public perception and the effectiveness of the Police to attain its internal security mandate.
The import of this, ladies and gentlemen, is that our ability to win over public trust and confidence as a pathway to crime management is precedent on the capacity of you, the officers here seated to rebrand the police and project it positively to the citizens. It is indeed in cognizance of this that we are embracing the concept of community policing which is directed at building strong partnership with the citizens in our drive to attain our mandate. The Public Relations Department of the Nigeria Police remains critical to this process.
All of these considerations make it imperative that we continually equip the Police Public Relations Officers with necessary skills and knowledge to efficiently engage the public and effectively manage the image and perceptions about the Force. It is my expectation, our dear guests and officers, therefore, that at the end of the workshop, your capacity would have been significantly broadened and your skills sharpened for optimal performance especially in the area of bridging the gap between the Police and members of the public and enhancing a people-friendly and Community -driven Police Force. It is also my expectation that you shall at the end of this programme, imbibe the concept and practice of strategic information management, and develop strong critical thinking ability needed to dissect and manage complex Public Relations challenges in the most professional manner.
To a very large extent, the efforts of the FPRO and his team of PPROs across the country have not gone unnoticed by the public. I must therefore, commend you for your efforts which are positively impacting public perception of the Force. However, there is still much work to be done towards correcting the age-long stereotypes about the Force. I challenge you not to rest on your oars but maintain optimal professionalism at all times. You must re-invent the image of the Force. I encourage you to take advantage of the new media and modern technology to do this and also ensure timely dissemination and response to issues. You must master your turfs and strengthen your relationship with your internal and external publics.
Let me at this juncture, on behalf of the Police Management Team and the Officers and Men of the Nigeria Police Force, express my most profound appreciation to the Executive Governor of Anambra State – His Excellency, Chief (Dr.) Willie Obiano for the hosting and sponsorship of this Training Workshop. Once again, Your Excellency, you have demonstrated beyond all measures that you are indeed a lover of peace and security and a staunch supporter of the Police. My gratitude also goes to all critical stakeholders and partners particularly the School of Media and Communication – PAN Atlantic University, Guest Speakers, Facilitators and Resource Persons whose unalloyed support contributed immensely to the actualization of this Workshop.