The Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, has disclosed that policemen killed during the EndSARS protests across the country would be promoted to their next rank.
Mr Adamu stated this on Wednesday in Benin City, Edo State, while addressing police officers at the state police command during his working visit to boost their morale.
The IGP also inspected the burnt police stations in the state, in company with the Deputy Governor, Philip Shaibu; Assistant-Inspector General of Police (AIG), Zone 5, Sholla David; and CP, Babatunde Kokumo, on Wednesday.
Seven police stations were burnt in Benin City by thugs, while several security vehicles were also burnt in the process.
Mr Adamu said the police were working with the Police Service Commission (PSC) to ensure that officers who lost their lives and those injured would be promoted to the next rank.
The IGP said the families of those that lost their lives and those that were injured as a result of the #EndSARS violence, would also be compensated.
He said, “The government has not forgotten the police. A lot of reforms are taking place. A lot of things are being put in place to take care of the welfare of officers. The Police Act of 2020 has taken care of most of our welfare needs.
“There will be compensation for policemen who were injured during the #EndSARS protests. Families of policemen who lost their lives will also be compensated. Retired police officers will also enjoy the health insurance scheme.
“I am working with the Police Service Commission, all the policemen who were injured or died during the #EndSARS protests will be promoted to the next level. President Buhari, two weeks ago, also approved the adjustment of our salaries to higher grades for all officers.”
Mr Adamu said the adjustment to higher pay was to encourage them for the utmost performance.
“So, we do not need to be demoralised or leave the public space for criminals to occupy,” Mr Adamu explained.
He commended the men and officers of the force for the restraint despite the provocation.
“The protesters went to the police stations to attack the police officers and men because they wanted them to react with maximum force, but because you are professionals, you are resilient and you know what you are doing, you did not apply maximum force.
“You applied minimum force and they were disappointed. The police of yesteryears are not the same as the modern police that we have. Your sense of professionalism has shown that you did not give room for the bad guys to succeed.
“The violence did not stop in one state. It went to 14 different states. In all the 14 states, it was the same story. In the south-western part, especially Lagos State, and the South-South zone, Edo and Delta States, we had attacks on police stations.
“In Lagos State, it was so terrible that private property was destroyed. Vehicles for public use were destroyed. Houses of individuals and their families were destroyed. This is very unfortunate.
“The attacks on the police and police stations were to demoralise you (policemen), to humiliate you and to make you feel that you do not have support at all, in the members of the public, but it is not the case. Some state governors came out to support the actions of the police, especially the way we handled the #EndSARS protests. Some individuals also came out to support the good works of SARS in curbing violent crimes.
“Despite all #EndSARS protests and attacks on the police, we also got open support from President Muhammadu Buhari. So, you should not be demoralised. You should be resilient.”
Mr Adamu further said that officers and men of the force will continue to enjoy the Health Insurance Scheme of the government even after their retirement.
The IGP said, “We register for Health Insurance Scheme while in service but it stops when we retired. But now, this government said no, it is not encouraging and it is now part of the law that those that have retired from the force will continue to enjoy health insurance scheme.”
Mr Adamu, who explained that already about 60,000 retired officers have been captured, urged them not to entertain fear as they will continue to enjoy the health insurance scheme of the government.
Also speaking to the officers of the state police command, Mr Shaibu, assured that the state government will continue to support the police in the discharge of their duties.
“Policemen must occupy the space for the criminals to flee. We love the Nigeria Police. Governor Godwin Obaseki has approved the rebuilding and in some cases the rehabilitation of the burnt police stations in Edo State, to buy patrol vehicles and to take care of the medical bills of the policemen who were injured during the #EndSARS protests,” he said.