President Muhammadu Buhari has approved a major re-organisation of Nigeria Police Force, creating a full-fledged intelligence unit cut out of the Force Criminal Investigation Department, and five new zonal commands, among other structural changes.
"Mr President approved that the Force Intelligence Bureau (FIB) be excised from the Force Criminal Investigation Department (FCID) to be a full-fledged Department to be headed by a Deputy Inspector-General of Police (DIG)," read a May 27 police circular, signed by the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu.
While the president, as chairman of the police council, which includes 36 state governors, can give anticipatory approval, he needs to summon a meeting of the council to ratify the reorganisation.
This restructuring, according to Mr Adamu, is aimed at fully integrating "intelligence-led policing strategy into the Community Policing initiative in addressing the threats that the dynamics of crimes pose."
With a new independent intelligence department, the police force now has eight departments.
Also, in line with the community policing initiative, Mr Buhari also approved the decentralisation of the FCID, with two new additional annex offices in Enugu and Gombe, respectively for criminal cases emanating from the south-south and south-east zones and the north-east zone, Mr Adamu said.
In addition to the existing FCID annexes in Kaduna and Lagos, the department now has four annexes, with each to be headed by an Assistant Inspector-General of Police reporting to the Deputy Inspector-General of Police heading the FCID at the headquarters in Abuja, according to the circular.
New zonal commands
In a further restructuring, the police are having five new zonal commands.
1. Ondo and Ekiti states are coming under new zonal command headquartered in Akure
2. Enugu, Ebonyi and Anambra states under new zonal command headquartered in Ukpo-Dunokofia.
3. Bayelsa and River states under new zonal command headquartered in Yenagoa.
4. Yobe and Borno states under new zonal command headquartered in Maiduguri.
5. Katsina and Kaduna states under new zonal command headquartered in Katsina.
The memo does not include the formational numbers of the new zonal commands but their creations mean decentralising the existing ones.
Also, each of the police colleges in Ikeja, Maiduguri, Kaduna and Orji-River is to be headed by a commandant with the rank of an AIG.
"This will strengthen administration, enhance the commitment of staff, and engender higher discipline and the quality of training at the colleges,"Mr Adamu said.
He said the approvals were granted by Mr Buhari "in furtherance to the need to expand and strengthen the Intelligence Department towards driving the intelligence-led policing strategy of the Force leadership and to aid in the enrichment of the Community Policing practice as approved by the Federal Government."