“The Police Is Your Friend” is the slogan you see when you walk into a Nigerian police station. Over and over the police force has proven this to be the opposite. In the last week, I have seen different stories about encounters with the Nigerian police and how people have lost faith in the system. One of the stories that stood out to me was the one featured on the humansofNy’s Instagram. For a fact, the Nigerian police are nuisances and are always accosting one for a bribe whenever they get the chance to.
I had a situation where I had to involve the police because a gadget I purchased refused to come on and the store refused to do anything about it. I took the step of going to the police because this was the third time I had to go back to the store since I purchased the gadget. It was very irritating as a customer to have to go back to the store on multiple occasions after paying so much and the device is not working.
I decided to get the police involved as this was the advise I got from people who were aware of my situation. I was reluctant and scared because I have never had any encounter with the police. The glaring truth about the Nigerian police is they are corrupt and nothing will come out of reporting anyone to them. I was just really worried it will be a fruitless exercise. I reported to a nearby police station. From the entrance, I began narrating the story to every police officer I encountered. The interesting thing was every police officer I encountered had sympathy for me and offered guidance on who the best person to help is.
I was able to meet with the DCO who led me to write a statement. I was there thinking my parents are going to be upset with me for going to a police station, writing a statement and putting my house address. After taking the statement, the police officers assured me it is a small matter and it will be resolved.
The police force dispatched 2 female sergeants to invite the branch manager for questioning. I accompanied them to identify him. I was scared because I knew this could get ugly real quick. The branch manager started using delay tactics – He said he needs the “Chief Security Officer”(CSO) of his company to escort him to the station.
One of the female sergeants was getting annoyed because the delay was becoming something else. They gave her the phone to speak to the CSO. Once she was done with the call, she said the CSO seems far away. He was trying to woo her over the phone and she was not having it. She said I should head back to the station and they will come with him. At this point, I was worried the company will pay the sergeants off and this whole effort would be a waste.
After over 1 hour when the request to the police station was sent, the branch manager and a security officer from the company eventually showed up at the station. We went to the DCO office and He was asked to state what happened. All he kept saying was liquid damage affected the device hence it is the reason the device is not working. A police inspector who was present said the gadget has not been with her for long so you have to give her a new one. The DCO said the situation is not acceptable. She stated I deserved a functioning gadget for the price I got a brand new gadget. The DCO was able to ensure we reached an agreement that I will be getting a new replaced gadget. The inspector also added that if they failed to hold their end of the agreement, I should give her a call.
This showed me it is not every police officer that is against justice. It is important to emphasise you need to know your right as a citizen and a customer. Don’t be comfortable with the lawlessness that you fail to fight for your right.
Image Credit : NTA