Kayode Oguntona in this piece looks at the ordeals and accommodation problem of the Nigeria Police.

Apart from food and clothing, shelter is another essential human basic need of life.

Perhaps,this is why the Inspector General of Police, Kayode Egbetokun, in a news release made public sometimes ago, hammered on the need to elevate the standard of living of his personnel by exploring avenues for affordable and decent housing.

This laudable decision, therefore, provides good opportunity to take stock of existing barracks accommodation and available utilities in order to have understanding of their housing needs.

For instance, in Oyo State, particularly Dubar and Ogbomoso area commands, findings revealed that some police barracks now serve as offices and operational units while many others are structurally outdated and in need of urgent rehabilitation.

Most police barracks in Ogbomoso and Oyo towns also have damaged roofs and asbestos resulting in shortage of accommodation for the police men.

Some policemen and their wives living in Awe and Dubar division barracks narrated their ordeal to our correspondent,” When rain is falling, everybody will just be worried, thinking of the roof. We are just managing. The roof is not okay at all. There is also no water, we need to go to the station.
Some people came, I think 2012 to inspect this place. Later on we didn’t see them again”.

Located on Oyo-Ogbomoso road, is the Atiba divisional police barracks which could easily be mistaken for blocks of students’ hostel, and also dilapidated, unlike certain others in Ibadan, Oyo state capital.

The Divisional Police Officer, Mr. Kayode Fadogba, expressed optimism that someday the facility would receive government attention, saying for now, his men have adopted the attitude of half bread is better than none.

A police officer, who was recently transferred to one of the divisions in Dubar area command, Mr.Ademola Ibrahim,expressed his passion for barracks accommodation.”what I heard is that it was somebody, a person in the town that built this accommodation for the police because of the new environment division where the division was located. That is why we are living there”.

Mr.Ibrahim said when corporate bodies and public spirited individuals join hands with government to provide solution to housing challenges facing the Nigeria Police, the problem would have been half solved in the spirit of public -private partnership initiative.


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