Dedicated to Nigeria's socio-political issues
October 3, 2007 - December 2, 2007
Public Safety And Emergency Response In Nigeria: A Systematic Approach
Emmanuel Uzo Obi
July 12, 2006
Social and economic activity can only thrive in a safe and secure environment; no wonder Public Safety and Emergency Management are critical factors in national development.
More than ever before, Nigeria is becoming very attractive to foreign investors with the rich and vast natural resources. Unfortunately, this has not translated to greater development and growth in the economy because of the growing concern over the rapid increase in violent crimes .Because of the pressure on government, it is imperative that Public safety must be top on the priority list of the government.
It is a known fact that no public safety system can guarantee 100% safety; however, an emergency response system put in place can minimize casualties, fatalities, and losses due to crime and accidents. Recent national disasters such as the plane crashes did nothing but expose the vulnerability of Nigeria in national emergencies and the absence of an emergency response plan. Nigeria has reached the watershed in its political history and the claim to leadership in Africa is very questionable given the dilapidated state of key infrastructure. It is sad to note that there are no working fire service stations or emergency medical services to respond to emergencies. This painful reality makes foreign investors question the wisdom in large scale business operations in Nigeria which at least is classified by U.S authorities as unsafe.
To address these inadequacies, it is important to take a close look at the key operators in the Public Safety system which includes the Police, fire service and emergency medical service.
The Fire Service and the EMS have been seriously ignored and neglected by successive governments at all levels.
The huge investment made by the Federal Government on the Police has not translated to a safer environment. The reasons are varied, ranging from structural problems, colonial mentality and lack of innovativeness or embrace of modern Police methods of operation and sociological or societal factors.
An irony that exists within the Nigeria Police Force is the number of academic law degree holders within the high command vis-à-vis the performance of the Police. The Nigeria Police abhors the rule of law, disrespects court orders and has no respect for human rights and human dignity. What is more, the present IGP Sunday Ehindero is also a lawyer and mathematician and one would have expected precision and quick response in police operations or at least respect for court orders.
In an attempt to reform the Police, Government had in the past set up panels made up with people ignorant of today’s developments in the world of law enforcement but strict adherents of the colonial system. Ironically, the colonial masters are decades more advanced than the antiquated system they left behind. To bring in fresh ideas, top officers of the Police high command have embarked on several overseas trips in search of solutions. The down side of this approach which I consider a misstep is that such overseas visits provided only ‘snapshots’ of police operations in civilized countries.
The upsurge in violent crimes quite naturally has pushed up the concept of Police reform as a subject of national discourse. Some schools of thought believe the solution would lie in the decentralization of the Police to allow for the emergence of state police. Given the level of political intolerance and immaturity prevalent in the society, the Government of President Obasanjo has quite rightly resisted the idea of a state controlled Police. Proponents of the state police insist that the idea is consistent with the federal structure in the country.
The public safety and law enforcement function are very critical although the Nigeria Police has reduced it to the lowest level of a ‘wetin –you- carry’ agency.
Unfortunately, the NGOs that claim to promote the idea of police reform still belong to the colonial mentality group that are myopic and recycle dead policies and ideas.
The goal of any Public safety system is to respond to emergencies at the shortest possible response time in a SAFE and EFFICIENT manner. Emergency response time is the key to successful pubic safety operations and this subject will be discussed in detail in a separate presentation.
In this presentation, what I have proposed is a fragmented and decentralized National Police system that will allow for specialization but still under the Federal Government. Under this system, State CEOs will play greater role in security management within their states. Setting up or reforming the Public Safety system must be a systematic approach and must withstand the challenges in the global arena as well as domestic environment. The purpose of this article is to give a general idea of how to truly reform our Public safety system. More specific and technical details can be provided on direct contact with this writer. Real reforms must have a lasting effect and compatible with system of government and challenges of the 21st century. The colonial system that presently exists is not only obsolete and out of date but creates more problems and tension in the society. Reform will entail a gradual transition to an entirely new system. Everything from the logo of the Nigeria Police, the uniform, equipment, transportation, training, mind set structure must have to go. The crude methods , barbarism ,horsewhips of the present police must go.
NIGERIAN NATIONAL POLICE SYSTEM.
The Police plays the dual role of a public safety agency and a law enforcement agency and both roles are considered in this presentation.
It is recommended that a National Police System be created with constituent Police departments that should be semi-autonomous, separately managed and interdependent.
This fragmented and decentralized system should be grown and nurtured over the years and allowed to gradually evolve and eventually roll over to state governments and city councils. This would be a brand new Police that will run side by side with the present Police until fully put in place. The mode of transition to the new system is outside the scope of this presentation.
§ Decentralized and fragmented
§ Separately Managed
§ No uniform command structure.
§ Under the Federal Government
§ Limited territorial jurisdiction
§ Seek legal advice from office of the State or Federal Attorney General as appropriate.
§ Abolition of Police Barracks
§ Abolition of Police Cells
This proposed Nigerian National Police System should be structured as follows:
§ Centralized Human Resources Division
§ Centralized Finance Division
§ Centralized Administration Division
§ Decentralized Operations Division
§ Centralized Communications & Information Technology Center.
Under this arrangement, the decentralized Operations Division should comprise semi-autonomous and separately managed constituent Police Departments across Nigeria.
The following constituent departments are recommended namely;
City Police Departments
LG Sheriff Departments
State Highway Patrols
Local Government Bureaus of Identification.
Each city should have a Police department whose size shall be determined by population, level of economic activity, financial resources e.g. Ibadan Police Department, Benin Police Department etc.
Cities with smaller population and less economic activity should be served by a Local Government Sheriff Department with overlapping territorial jurisdiction across cities and towns within the LGA.
Jurisdiction is an interesting subject especially where there are multiple police jurisdictions. The US has over 17,000 independent Police departments and the problem of jurisdiction have disappeared over several years of its existence. Therefore, multiple police jurisdictions operating in Nigeria under the presidency or umbrella of the FG will be an excellent learning experience. The advantage of this fragmented system is that each police department specializes in their respective areas.
The structure of a City Police Department is very important and an outline has been given in this article.
- Special Operations.
The Special Operations Division in the City PD should comprise such units as Rapid Response(SWAT),traffic enforcement, drug enforcement,k-9, desk operations, and crime prevention units.
Each State Highway Patrol should primarily be charged with Driver education and highway safety within the respective states. In addition, this department could act as back up for LG Police/sheriff departments across LGAs within the state.
Each LG Bureau of Identification should be responsible for such functions as:
ü Mug shots
ü Automated Fingerprint System
ü Arrest Records
ü Crime Scene Analysis and Processing
ü Processing of arrested suspects before Bail.
The key functions of this bureau are outside the scope of this presentation, however, an illustration has been given to give the reader an idea of the working of this kind of specialized unit.
In the United States for example, whenever a distress call is received and processed via the 911 emergency communication center, the first responders are dispatched to the crime scene. The usual procedure is for the Police (first responders) to secure the crime scene to prevent contamination by setting up a barricade or tapping up the place with the yellow tape. On arrival of the ID technicians, the scene is examined and all evidence collected including tire marks, trace evidence, fingerprints, shoe prints etc. I recall one incident where the ID technicians picked up chewing gum from the scene of a crime. The bite mark on the gum was enhanced and a match was found from dental records and a suspect identified. There was also DNA evidence that tied the suspect to the crime scene. This subject cannot be discussed exhaustively in this kind of presentation but this is just to give a clue to want ID techs do in a secured crime scene.
§ Centralized Human Resources Division
Typically a centralized HR Division should normally be responsible for developing:
ü Hiring and Firing Policies and Procedures
ü Disciplinary Policy and Procedures
ü Conditions of Service
These policies and procedures could be enforced through HR Representatives who work with the constituent Police departments within the system. These Representatives working with these departments also provide advice to the Department Chief and other supervisors.
Basic Law Enforcement Training and Certification
It is recommended that a National Board on Law Enforcement Education be set up to draw the curriculum for Law Enforcement Education in Nigeria. The idea is that Police academies train law enforcement candidates who should sit a Board certification examination after their training. Successful candidates are then certified as Law Enforcement Officers and they can apply to any agency. The purpose of this is to improve the quality of law enforcement officers.
Establishment of Police academies should be open to the private sector and other institutions of higher learning. However, we cannot make the mistake of using retired police officers as instructors as we envisage a new generation police.
With this proposed system, these constituent Police departments should do their own hiring following Policies and Procedures developed by the HR folks.
For example, during the application process, a computer adapted Employment Questionnaire (multiple choice format) should be administered on the applicant to test applicants;
ü respect for rule of law
ü respect for due process
ü respect for human and civil rights
ü Respect for the constitution.
Since different parts of the country have different challenges for Public safety agencies, it is suggested that for the pay scale, cities should be classified as A, B, C such that each classification has a different pay structure. For example, cities classified as A should have the same pay structure. This would be the cities with the greatest challenges and risks. It is not a good idea to have a uniform pay structure within the system and candidates should be able to choose and apply for employment in any area that needs their services.
To further highlight the departmentalization or decentralization of the Police, different rank structures should be available within the system and the various departments should have the latitude to adopt any structure. There are different rank structures in the US at the level of city Police department and state departments.
A number of counties have the sheriffs department instead of a county police. The County Sheriff is an elective office and elections are usually conducted for such position. This is not to suggest this system for Nigeria but just to give the reader an idea of how sophisticated law enforcement function is in the United States.
911 Emergency Communications Dispatch Centers
A dispatcher/call taker is the link between the public and the public safety responders such as police officers, paramedics, and firemen.
To complete this link, a dispatcher/call taker must be able to pass on a certain amount of information in order to coordinate responders. Due to a heavy load of requests for assistance (over 100,000 per year in some U.S Counties) and the nature of emergency calls, these calls must be handled in a timely and efficient manner.
All callers are equally important, regardless of whether the request is for a responder or for information. To help determine what type of request they are dealing with, a call taker will ask specific questions which will vary depending on what type of request is being received. For example, when a vehicle accident is being reported, information needed includes an exact location and descriptions of the vehicles involved. This information is invaluable to emergency responders to help them locate the victims quickly. It would seem frustrating for a victim to be able to see the responders on the opposite side of a large parking lot and realize that they cannot find them. When reporting a suspicious person or vehicle, a good description is a vital tool in assisting emergency responders in locating the person or vehicle quickly.
A call taker is often responsible for performing multiple duties at the same time. When a call comes in, the caller's information is typed into a CAD (Computer Aided Dispatch) system. With this system, the dispatcher receives requests for emergency response while the call taker is still talking with the caller. This allows help to be sent as soon as the location and type of emergency are identified by the call taker while allowing the call taker to remain on the phone, obtaining more detailed information or giving directions to the caller on what they should do until help arrives. Your call taker may also be responsible for handling other phone calls, radio traffic, relaying information by voice, computer, or radio, or any combination of these.
On requests for information, a call taker will do his/her best to direct callers to the appropriate person or agency. Emergency calls always have priority over information requests and the caller may be asked to hold while an emergency call is handled. Occasionally, there is nothing that the call taker can do for a caller, in these cases an alternate route, if known, will be suggested to the caller.
A fully trained dispatcher/call taker is certified through the U.S State after completing pre-determined areas of training. The dispatcher/call taker must be certified to be able to use the State & National Teletype Computer System. They must also be a certified EMD (Emergency Medical Dispatcher). An EMD is trained to give telephone instructions to callers to aid the victim and control the situation until emergency responders arrive. On the State level in the U.S, there are 4 levels of certification, the qualifications for these depend on the amount and type of training a dispatcher has had and years of experience. Dispatchers must re-certify on EMD and Teletype every two years, this is usually done while they are performing their regular duties.
At full staff, there are 18 dispatcher/call takers and 4 supervisors. The number of staff on duty varies with the time of day. The average number of people on duty is 4-5 when the center is at full staff.
The Nigerian Government may decide to establish these centers on the basis of Senatorial zones in each State or in each Local Government Area, or each town. These dispatch centers receive calls from the public and then route calls to for example command and control of the Police that has a link to radio equipped field officers. Every Police officer in the U.S. usually has a walkie-talkie and each patrol cruiser has a laptop computer. All these underscore the importance of Information to public safety and law enforcement agencies.
I will illustrate one of the many capabilities of a Public Safety Communications Center by using this hypothetical case. Suppose I live on Allen Avenue Ikeja and on the phone with someone in Sabon Gari Kano. Suddenly there is screaming and an alarm on a break in by a gang of robbers in the kano end, phone contact is lost…I can call 911 Ikeja and 911 Ikeja will re-route my call to 911 Kano and I will give all the information, location phone number and brief description of the incident. While the dispatcher is taking the information, the Police are notified instantaneously the dispatcher can call the Kano phone number or ‘call interrupt’ if some is on the line to try to establish contact with the victims. This type of situation happens all the time in the real world and only I.T. solutions can empower the Police to act in a very timely manner.
Unfortunately Nigeria does not have this kind of center but the technology is there to help the situation. At present different Police formations give out a series of phone numbers with which they can be contacted. Some of the numbers are not functional while others remain busy (engaged) all the time. Memorizing these numbers is very cumbersome but making an emergency call ought to be as simple as 911. Emergency telephone numbers should never be busy.
The right type of transportation is not as easy as making out an LPO to PAN in Kaduna. In the US for example, it is serious business because the user departments make the technical specifications of the vehicles they need and give to the manufacturer. After manufacture the vehicles undergo tests to make sure they meet the specifications of the user police departments.
In the City of Raleigh for example, Police patrol cars remain in the fleet for 70,000 miles or three years whichever comes first.
The Nigeria Police has been in the business of purchasing cars that are unsuitable for police operations. Police in the US use the Ford Crown Victoria, the Chevy Caprice, Dodge, Chevy Impala and even SUVs. But the versions manufactured for the Police are different from the ones used by the general public.
I have included a portion of Police car evaluation by the Michigan State Police (one of the thousands of autonomous police departments in the US)
Patrol Vehicle Testing
Michigan State Police Patrol Car Evaluation
Each year since the 1978 models, the Michigan State Police have tested a variety of police package (pursuit capable) and special service package (not intended for pursuit) patrol vehicles. These annual tests include acceleration to 100 mph, absolute top speed, braking from 60 mph after brake warm-up, road racing course lap times, an ergonomic and communications installation review and EPA fuel economy ratings.
The acceleration, top speed and braking phases are conducted at Chrysler's Proving Grounds near Chelsea, MI. The vehicle dynamics testing has been performed on the 2.0-mile road course at Grattan Raceway near Grand Rapids, MI.
The 2005 police package vehicles tested were the 4.6L V-8 Ford Crown Victoria Police Interceptor (CVPI) with both 3.27:1 and 3.55:1 rear axle ratios, the 3.8L V-6 Chevrolet Impala and the 5.3L V-8 Chevrolet Tahoe 2WD with both gasoline and E85 fuel.
The 2005 special service package vehicles tested were the 4.6L V-8 Ford Explorer 4X4, the 5.4L V-8 Ford Expedition 4X4, the 5.3L V-8 Chevrolet Tahoe 4X4, the 3.5L V-6 Dodge Magnum, and 6.6L V-8 Chevrolet Silverado 4X4 pickup.
The Ford CVPI with the 3.55 ratio rear axle was the quickest police or special service sedan to 60 mph, 80 mph and 100 mph, which are the three MSP focus speeds. While the vehicle must meet certain minimums at all three of these speeds, the zero to 100 mph times determine the winner of this test phase.
The police sedan with the second quickest acceleration was the 3.27-geared Ford CVPI. The 3.27 ratio is less than 0.3 seconds slower to 60 mph than the 3.55 car, and within 0.4 seconds of the 100 mph time. The Ford CVPI was an average of two seconds faster to 100 mph than the special service Dodge Magnum and police package Chevrolet Impala.
The 250 hp, 3.55-geared Ford CVPI really is comparable to the legendary Chevrolet LT-1 Caprice in terms of acceleration. The average acceleration to 60 mph for the 5.7L Caprice was 8.2 seconds. The 3.55 geared Ford CVPI hits 60 mph in 8.15 seconds. The zero to 100 mph times are surprisingly close. The Caprice hit 100 mph in 21.9 seconds, while the 3.55-geared CVPI reached it in 22.9 seconds.
New for 2005 is the pursuit-rated, 2WD Tahoe SUV. Among the SUVs, the police package Tahoes, one powered by gasoline, one powered by E85, was the hot rods. And not just fast for an SUV, but fast outright. Each hit 60 mph in 8.2 seconds, like the 3.55 geared Ford CVPI and old Caprice LT-1. Each hit 100 mph in the 23 second bracket, splitting the difference between the 3.55 CVPI and the 3.27 CVPI.
The Ford Explorer and Expedition, and the Chevrolet 4X4 Tahoe reached 60 mph in the 9 second bracket. Honorable Mention goes to the Chevrolet Silverado with its turbo diesel V-8. It reached 60 mph in 11 seconds and 100 mph in 28 seconds.
The second MSP test is top speed. At the end of the last acceleration run, the MSP troopers continue to accelerate the car around the 4.7-mile oval. The highest speed recorded anywhere on the course is the top speed of record. For one reason or another, all police and special service vehicles are electronically speed limited but not all vehicles actually reach that pre-set, limited speed. All vehicles are run without speed-robbing spotlights and light bars.
The police or special service sedan with the highest top speed is the 3.27 ratio Ford CVPI with a run at 128 mph, speed-limited to 129 mph. Second, was the Impala, which was speed-limited to 123 mph? The 3.55-geared CVPI is speed limited to 119 mph to prevent unwanted driveshaft harmonics. The special service Dodge Magnum reached 117 mph.
The police package 2WD Tahoe has a much higher electronic speed limit than the special service 4WD Tahoe. The police-spec versions reach between 124 and 125 mph. All of the special service SUVs are all severely speed limited. The 4WD Tahoe and the Expedition all shut off around 100 mph. The Explorer reached 107 mph. The Silverado, speed limited to 99 mph, actually hit 100 mph, but just once.
The MSP braking protocol involves two 90 mph full pedal stops to warm the brakes, followed by six 60 mph full pedal stops for score. After a heat soak period, these 90 mph and 60 mph stops are repeated. The best 10 out of 12 stops from 60 mph are averaged for the final deceleration rate. This then is converted to a projected stopping distance from 60 mph.
The MSP has established a maximum stopping distance for their large patrol sedans, both RWD (Ford CVPI) and FWD (Impala). The standard is roughly the same at 149.7 feet and 149.1 feet, respectively.
For 2005, for the fifth time in the six years since its release, the Chevrolet Impala turned in the best braking performance of any police sedan. Using Camaro-sized brakes, the police Impala stopped like a Camaro in just 136 feet from 60 mph after a brutal brake warm-up. The special service Magnum was next with a 143 foot stop.
The 2005 CVPI stopped in an average of 147 feet. The stopping distances near, but under, the MSP limit are attributed to the 2003 suspension change, which positioned the front caliper and brake assembly deeper inside the deeply offset wheel and out of the cool, outside airflow. Moving the caliper assembly farther inside the wheel allowed the suspension to be set more outboard, which greatly improved the handling on the 2003 models.
This change forced Ford to deal with brake cooling. Among the other changes, like pad material, is the use of steel wheels with additional vent openings, a rolling change to the 2004 models produced in mid-year. In the future, expect a 17-inch wheel, like used on the Ford Crown Victoria Sport, to be introduced on the CVPI. This change will positively get the outside air inside the wheel to cool the brakes.
The MSP has established a maximum braking distance for a police/pursuit-capable SUV but does not establish maximums for special service package SUVs. As a reference only, the police SUV must stop from 60 mph in 170 feet. All the special service SUVs stopped between 142 and 153 feet! The Silverado, however, took 173 feet. Ironically, the heaviest SUV of those tested, the 5360-pound Expedition, edged out the other SUVs with the shortest stop.
The Grattan Raceway is a two mile, 13 turn road-racing course. The road course has a 3200-foot front straightaway. By the end of the, the Ford CVPI, for example, reaches 110 mph. The course also has a number of twists and off-camber turns. On some parts of the track, the cars get nearly airborne while on other sections of track the suspension almost completely bottoms out. Each car is driven five laps by four different MSP troopers from their Precision Driving Unit.
The 3.55-geared Ford CVPI was the quickest vehicle around the road course, followed a half second later by the 3.27-geared CVPI. The Impala trailed by more than two seconds, or 10 car-lengths. The police package 2WD Tahoe was an additional two seconds behind.
The MSP does not test special service package vehicles, like the Dodge Magnum, Ford Explorer, Chevrolet Tahoe 4X4, Ford Expedition or Chevrolet Silverado on the road course. This is an emphasis that, in addition to clear and frequent written disclaimers from each manufacturer, these vehicles are not designed nor intended for high-speed or pursuit-style driving.
Ergonomics and Communications
The ergonomics and communications installation rating by the MSP involves a 27-point, subjective evaluation performed by four state troopers. They consider legroom, hip room, ease of entry and exit, along with the ease of installing communication and enforcement gear. Of the 2005 sedans, the Ford Crown Victoria was subjectively ranked the highest with 202 points. The Impala was close behind with 200 points.
This years' ergonomic evaluation continues the see-saw results between the CVPI and the Impala. One wins one year, while the other wins the next year. A four-year average may
put this into a better perspective. During this time, the Impala averaged 206 "points" compared to 205 "points" for the Ford CVPI, a statistical tie.
The special service Magnum was well behind the two police package sedans with 185 points, the lowest of any police or special service vehicle. The Magnum got high marks in areas like front seat adjustability and front headroom, but low marks for dashboard access, trunk access and rear visibility.
Among the SUVs, for the fourth year in a row, the Tahoe got the highest ergonomic ratings, followed by the Expedition and then Explorer, for the third year in a row. The Silverado pickup truck checked in with 203 "points" beating all the police sedans and all of the SUVs except the Tahoe!
The Michigan State Police base their fuel economy rating on the EPA City mileage results to the 1/10th mile per gallon. Fuel economy matters. Since fuel economy is a tangible cost, unlike acceleration to 100 mph, for example, some fleet managers consider this operating expense on equal footing with the initial expense of the vehicle. They are not going to spend $.15/gallon difference for a car that runs on premium fuel. Yet selecting a patrol vehicle with a 1.7-mpg difference in mileage is (cost-wise) the same as selecting an engine that runs on premium.
The police sedan with the best fuel economy is the 3.8L V-6 police package Chevrolet Impala at 20.9 mpg EPA City. The 4.6L V-8 Ford CVPI with the 3.27 axle and the 3.55 axle are both rated at 17.7 mpg. The 3.27-geared CVPI will probably get better mileage in most patrol scenarios than the 3.55 car. The 3.55 car may get better mileage for traffic units that spend more time actually accelerating. The 2WD Tahoe PPV is rated at 14.3 mpg (gasoline) and 11.3 mpg (E85). The MSP does not publish fuel economy results for special service package SUVs, or special service package sedans like the 3.5L V-6 Dodge Magnum. However, since these are EPA numbers, the City and Highway numbers are readily available.
Weighing the Test Phases
The MSP weighs the six test phases to suit the needs of a state police or highway patrol. The needs of city or county law enforcement agencies may be (and probably are) very different. While subtle changes have taken place, from time to time, the MSP typically weighs the tests as: Road course--30%; Acceleration--20%; Braking--20%; Top speed--15%; Ergonomics--10%; and Fuel economy--5%. These numbers are plugged into a bid adjustment formula. This formula may be used by any agency and is available at the NLECTC website.
However, different weightings may be selected. For example, an urban department may want to emphasize fuel economy, ergonomics and braking while deemphasizing road course, acceleration and top speed. Since most bids are close, this change in weighting may point to a different "most bang for the buck" police vehicle.
From time to time, one make of police sedan has dominated the MSP tests. Sometimes one model has swept all six tests. At other times, the results are a toss-up. This is one of the latter times. Of the strictly pursuit-rated, police package vehicles; the Ford CVPI produced the fastest acceleration, highest top speed and the quickest road course times. The Chevrolet Impala had the greatest braking performance and most fuel economy. The Chevrolet Tahoe had the best ergonomics.
A Presidential Committee is presently working on providing equipment for the Nigeria Police. It would be interesting to find out how many of the committee members are aware of today’s technology in law enforcement. How many of them for instance has ever heard of a radar trailer or GPR?
FIRE SERVICE AND EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICE (OTHER PUBLIC SAFETY AGENCIES)
The Emergency Medical Service system (known by the acronym "EMS" in the USA and Canada) is responsible for providing pre-hospital (or out-of-hospital) care by paramedics, emergency medical technicians (EMT's), and medical first responders (MFRs in US terminology). In the US,they are not part of the Police but work in cooperation with the Police and the Fire Service as Public Safety agencies and are part of the Emergency Response system.
The mission of any Fire Department is to minimize the loss of life and property resulting from fires, medical emergencies, environmental, and other disasters.
This mission can be accomplished through prevention, education, fire suppression, medical services, code enforcement, rescue skills, and other related emergency and non-emergency activities.
The ideal thing is to divide each city into fire districts and EMS zones so that fire stations and EMS stations can be established. The number of EMS stations, fire stations and structuring of Police field operations is a key factor in reducing the Emergency Response time in any city or town. Because of the importance of the Emergency Response time, the concept will be dealt with in greater detail in another presentation.
Legislation to prevent refusal of emergency treatment by any medical facility to a victim is necessary for the success of the public safety system.
OTHER PUBLIC SAFETY SYSTEM IN NIGERIA
Typically, public safety systems comprise the Police, Fire Service and the EMS. Apart from the municipalities, the following should have their own Public Safety Systems:
ü Nigerian Airports Authority
ü Nigerian Inland Waterways
ü All Higher Institutions of Learning
COMPANY POLICE AGENCIES AND SECURITY GUARDS COMPANIES
The private sector should be allowed into the business of providing armed security and safety services on contract basis to major companies, government agencies and a wide range of industrial and commercial customers. One of such companies overseas is the Wackenhut Corporation, Guardsmark etc.
Wackenhut is a leading provider of contract services to major corporations, government agencies, and a wide range of industrial and commercial customers. The company's security-related services include uniformed security officers, investigations, background checks, hotline programs, emergency protection, and security audits and assessments.
The Company has a nationwide network of customer support centers to insure a uniformity of standards, quality service and professionalism, and close attention to local needs.3
REMOVING IDLE HANDS AND POTENTIAL VIOLENT CRIMINALS FROM THE STREETS.
A major source of miscreants in society is the large pool of the unemployed. The FG should as a matter of urgency create an unemployment insurance scheme to provide employment security.
ü Enumerate all unemployed by city and educational qualification using national id numbers.
ü Provide weekly unemployment allowance for a predetermined time period
ü Set employment quota for major government contractors.
ü Provide educational financial assistance to Nigerians by way of grants and loans.
ü Decentralize accreditation of Higher Institutions on regional basis.
The problem of proliferation of illegal arms can be controlled by:
ü Buy-back programs at city and local levels.
ü Census of licensed guns.
ü Create database of licensed gun owners and serial numbers in each LGA. .
Gun permits should be issued at LG level and should only allow the gun owner to carry the gun within the local government area. If the gun owner moved into another territory, the gun should be registered in the new location.
OTHER FEDERAL LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES OUTSIDE THE NATIONAL POLICE SYSTEM.
ü Economic and Financial Crimes Commission
ü Department of State Services.
ü Nigerian Drug Law Enforcement Agency
ü Nigerian Immigration Service
ü Nigerian Customs
ü Internal Revenue Service
ü Proposed Federal Directorate of Intelligence and Investigations
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This page was last updated on 10/27/07.