ETHNIC PROFILING: TIV GROUP TAKES ON IGP, DEMANDS APOLOGY

The Benue Youth Forum, BYF has read with utter disappointment, a statement in the Nation Newspaper of August 10, 2022 credited to the Inspector General of Police, Usman Alkali where he openly disparaged the entire Tiv nation over the misbehaviour of an individual.

The IGP had in a parley with officers and men of the Nigerian Police in Gombe State made those demeaning remarks that were clearly disrespectful to the Tiv nation.

He was explaining why the Police high command recently sacked three Police men, among them an Inspector of Police of Tiv origin who was serving in the Kogi State Command for various misdemeanors inimical to the image of the force and at different locations.

It is curious that IGP Alkali mentioned the Tiv twice in two sentences without any mention of the tribes or ethnicity of the other two Police men that were also dismissed for unprofessional conduct.

For the number one Police officer in the country to make comments like “one Tiv man” and “look at how he was dressed like a Tiv warrior” while referring to the dismissed Police Inspector is tantamount to hatred and ethnic profiling which shouldn’t be coming from someone who is expected to be neutral at all times.

Many Police officers and men from different tribes have been found wanting in the discharge of their duties but at no time did their ethnic groups so disparaged. A recent case in point is the allegations against DCP Abba Kyari and his colleagues who are currently standing trial for drug related offences. Their tribes has not been an issue.

Why the Benue Youth Forum will not support any act of criminality by any officer of the state as exhibited by the inglorious action of the dismissed Police Inspector which eventually cost him his job, we, on behalf of the entire Tiv nation, takes exception to that blatant insult and overt spewing of vile towards the Tiv nation by the Inspector General of Police.

We therefore condemn in totality, the attempt by the IGP to disparage the Tiv people and portray them in bad light.

Such remarks coming from a man who has always stressed the need for people to avoid ethnic profiling of criminals shows that there is much to be desired from him if he must be seen as a professional himself.

We therefore demand an immediate withdrawal of the careless comments from IGP Usman and public apology to the Tiv nation who have been insulted by that infamous outing in Gombe.

The BYF has utmost repect for constituted authorities and government institutions; and we expect them to be in the forefront of uniting the nation, rather than making divisive comments or taking actions capable of creating mistrust among the people.

Terrence Kuanum,
President,
Benue Youth Forum.

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