The Bayelsa State Commissioner of Police, Mike Okoli, has revealed that the state command under his watch faces the lack of basic crime-fighting equipment, operational vehicles and shortage of manpower to fight crime and criminality in the state.
Mike Okoli, made the revelation in Yenagoa, the state capital during the visit of the pioneer Assistant Inspector-General of Police, Austin Agbonlahor to the Command headquarters.
The Commissioner while outlining the achievements recorded by the Nigerian Police in the state since his assumption of office, noted that the peculiar terrain of the state, the riverine nature, afford criminals the opportunity to strike and disappear into the sea and creek”
According to Mike Okoli, though the State Police Command has been trying its best within the limited resources available to it, the command with over 26 divisional headquarters and 4281 personnel does not have a single operational Armoured Personel Carrier, gunboat and other crime-fighting equipment.
Okoli told the AIG that on arrival at the Bayelsa Command, the noticeable crimes in the state were that of kidnapping, sea piracy, cultism, communal and chieftaincy disputes, pipeline vandalism and illegal bunkering, “we targeted the reduction of crime and criminality despite our challenges.”
“We always strive to ensure that crime does not take place but when it does, we. Must respond quickly. Above all, we have been able to sustain relative peace in the state.”
Okoli, however, listed as part of the police command achievements, the prompt arrest of the gang leader of the Azikoro Church killing and recovery of their AK47 rifle, the rescue of kidnap victims, foiling of kidnap attempts and resolution of several protests in the state. “