By Mary BASSEY, Senior Investigator Reporter, Lagos.
A passionate call has gone to the Inspector-General of Police IGP Mohammed Adamu to urgently recommend the Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of Operations DCP Ops, of the Lagos State Police Command, DCP Mohammed Ari Ali to the Police Service Commission PSC for immediate promotion to the rank of a Commissioner so as to continue the crime fighting prowess of the outgoing Commissioner of Police CP Muazu Zubairu who has just been promoted Assistant Inspector-General of Police AIG. The call followed widespread speculation that a powerful leader of the ruling All Progress Congress APC in Lagos State was already rooting for one of his boys who was already a Commissioner of Police serving at the Force Headquarters Abuja and was in charge of the Lagos Task Force and later RRS to be brought back to Lagos as Commissioner of Police. Aside this, sources said the successes recorded in Lagos State by former CP Edgal Imohimi and his successor- the outgoing CP (now AIG) Muazu Zubairu in the areas of reducing crimes and criminality to the barest minimum and policing with human face that has become common place in the state could not have been achieved without the sturdy coordination of the officers and men of the Command by DCP Ali; whose wealth of knowledge of the topography of Lagos and dynamics of crimes had yet to be rivaled.
*DCP Mohammed Ari Ali… DCP Ops Lagos Command
Whereas, some Lagos residents spoke glowingly of Ali’s virtues on condition of anonymity, others who felt there was no need hiding their identities said it would amount to a misnomer for the IGP and of course, PSC to consent to the maneuvering of the powerful APC leader by undermining the overwhelming wishes of the people, change a winning team and bring another Police officer other than Mohammed Ali to head Lagos Command.
Managing Director, Angel Guards Security Limited, Apapa Mr. Israel Asigbe who felt that ranking in the Police Force has nothing to do with dedication to duty and knowing the job, said by principle of the Police Act, Ali was more than qualified to be elevated a Commissioner having worn the DCP rank for more than four years. According to him, “The bitter truth is that DCP Mohammed Ali has paid his dues. He was an excellent Police officer when he was in Apapa where he was the Area Crime Officer before becoming the Divisional Police Officer. He proved himself. Even when he was redeployed to Denton Police Division, he was a super cop. When he was the Commander in Charge of Area C, he also proved himself. Even as Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of Operations DCP Ops at the State Command; Ali still serves with passion and everybody is still feeling his touch. Let us face it; Mohammed Ali is in a better position to handle the office of the Commissioner of Police in charge of Lagos because apart knowing the pattern of crimes in the state, he is an apostle of the IGP’s community policing models and Police/civil populace relationship.” Corroborating this assertion, Publisher of Security Watch Africa magazine who also doubles as host of the popular Security Watch Africa, a weekly security program on AIT, Mr. Patrick Agbambu said DCPAli was well qualified to take over the leadership of Lagos Command at the exit of AIG Muazu saying, “At the risk of adulation, Ali has proven to be a man capable of handling the Lagos State Police Command. He has been tried, tested and proven to be a man who is passionate about his job. Just like former Commissioner of Police, Imohimi Edgal who was DCP Operations when he assumed office as Lagos State Commissioner of Police during which he did wonderfully well, I believe Ali would also do excellently well.”
A peep into DCP Ali’s credentials show that he is unarguably one of the officers who can proudly claim to have an in-depth knowledge of the Lagos terrain with its attendant crime characteristics. This is certainly based on the fact that out of the 29 years he has served so far in the Police Force, fourteen and half years have been spent in Lagos State alone. The remaining fourteen and half years were spent at other Police Commands such as Benue, FCT, Police Staff College, River, Bayelsa, Delta and Kano. What this clearly shows is that Ali is more at home with fighting crime in Lagos than elsewhere since the number of years he has served in Lagos in different capacities gives him some advantage in understanding the arts and science of crime and criminality and how best to checkmate same. Little wonder, he can audaciously tell criminals of different stock to relocate from Lagos if they would not repent as he has what it takes to pursue them to the gate of hell. Having served at different times in Lagos as Crime Officer, Divisional Police Officer, Area Commander and currently Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of Operations, Ali stands taller than many of his contemporaries as far as policing Lagos State is concerned. At Apapa where he served in three different tasking categories, Ali foiled several bank robberies, diffused the One Million-boys menace in Ajegunle in and recovered five AK 47 rifles with 1500 rounds of live ammunition in 2009. It is not surprising therefore, that the Police high authorities have chosen to always entrust him with more challenging tasks wherever he is posted to serve. Prior to his current posting in Lagos, he had served as Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of Administration at the Benue Police Command after spending a few weeks as the Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of Zonal CIID, FCT Abuja.
At various times, he was the Area Commander in-charge of Area C, Lagos; Assistant Commissioner of Police at Rivers State Command and later ‘Area B; Command Apapa, Lagos. He had also served as Divisional Police Officer in various Stations in Lagos, Bayelsa and Delta Commands. A holder a Bachelor of Science B.Sc. degree in Library/Political Science from University of Maiduguri, a Master of Science in Industrial Relations from Delta State University DCP Ali also holds a Doctor of Philosophy (Phd) in Industrial Relations from Irish University Business School, Penbroke Square, UK. Many have had to describe him as a thorough bred professional Police officer who brings intellectualism to bear his operational activities. He does not get intoxicated with the powers of a super cop as he strongly believes in the rule of law; an officer who believes that fighting crime is a collective effort and would not hesitate to tell anyone who cares to listen that the recent decline in crime and criminality in Lagos State particularly, in the last two years was as a result of partnership with various stakeholders and state government’s positive intervention in security matters. In the same vein, many residents of Lagos State also referred to DCP Ali is a detribalized Nigerian, an officer and gentleman who has the ability to amiably relate socio-culturally with all manner of people of different ethnic or racial extractions without playing up his own tribal swag. Perhaps, this is ostensibly why his identity is often mistake. His mastery of some Nigerian languages outside his own native language has often brought him closer to the populace in Lagos State and thereby making his community policing strategy work better. He is ready to tell anyone who cares to listen that “We know the in and out of Lagos State and we have credible informants. We act on information and intelligence and would arrive at the criminals’ den and pick them like snails.”
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