Functions of Nigeria Police Force, Duties, and Roles. Considering the state of the nation, it is important for every citizen of the country to know the Functions of the Nigerian Police Force, Duties, and Roles. There have been many occasions where the lack of this knowledge proved unpleasant for the people of the country as well as the Nigerian Police. The lack of good content about the functions and roles of the Nigerian Police made us put up this article, ‘Functions of Nigerian Police and Roles’. Although it can be inferred from the title, this article will create awareness of the functions and roles of the Nigerian Police.

According to the provision of the Nigerian constitution the Nigerian Police Force are allowed to perform the following function;

{ Duties Of Nigerian Police }

  • Power to arrest the offender(s)
  • Power to prevent the commission of an offense
  • Protection of lives and property
  • Power to detect crime
  • Power to maintain law and order
  • Power to investigate matters
  • Power to search etc.

One of the most important powers conferred on the Nigerian Police is the power to arrest, this has been so important over the years and cannot be deal without as long as the Nigerian Police Force is concerned.

The Nigerian Police Force maintains a three-tier administrative structure of departments, zonal and state commands

The NPF is divided into 7 departments. These departments are:

The following are the departments, and their responsibilities ;

{ Functions Of Nigerian Police Force }

  • Department of Finance and Administration: They are tasked with General Administration and Finance. The Department of Finance and Administration of the Police is responsible for administering the body and handling its financial issues.
  • Department of Operations: They are tasked with Crime prevention, Public Order, Public Safety. The Department of Operations of the Police is responsible for preventing crimes in the country, plus the responsibility of maintaining order in the public.
  • Department of Logistics and Supply: They perform the duties of Works and Police Estate Management. The Department of Logistics and Supply of the Police is concerned with the welfare and proper functioning of the body.
  • Department of Criminal Investigation: They are in charge of investigations. While the Department of Operations of the Police is responsible for preventing crimes, the Department of Criminal Investigation of the Police handles the investigation of crimes.
  • Department of Training and Development: This is the Human Resource department of the Nigerian Police Force. The Department of Training and Development of the Police is responsible for training and developing police personnel.
  • Department of Research and Planning: They handle statistics and Data. The Department of Research and Planning assesses the performance of the Police. The department furthermore strives towards improving the efficiency of the body.
  • Department of Information Technology: They perform duties relating to ICT and communication management. The Department of Information Technology is concerned with IT-related matters of the Nigerian Police.


Roles and Functions of the Nigeria Police Force

The Police have a number of functions and roles. The government of the country expects this body to carry out their functions, and also refrain from trespassing. The following are the functions and roles of the body:

  • 1. Prevention and detection of crime

One of the basic roles of the Police is to prevent and detect crime in the country. It will be negligence of duty if this body allows an evitable crime to be carried out. The police are also meant to detect crimes in the country.

  • 2. Apprehension of offenders

The Police are instilled with the right to apprehend offenders. Furthermore, when a person is apprehended over perpetration, it is expected of the person to cooperate with them.

  • 3. Preservation of law and order

The Police are the body in the country tasked to preserve law and order. This body will willingly go against any individual, group or organization that violates the laws and order of Nigeria or a state.

  • 4. Protection of life and property

One of the basic and most important functions of the Police is to protect lives and properties in the country. When a person’s life is under attack, the police is one of the most appropriate body to call. The police can also be called when an attempt is made to destroy property, be it private or public property.

  • 5. Performance of such military duties

The Police may perform military duties, on behalf of the Nigerian military. These duties include duties within and outside the country.

  • 6. Prosecution

The Police force has the legal right to prosecute offenders before a court of law. They have the right to carry out prosecution in any law court in the country. Any citizen of the country can be prosecuted, and personality can not be used to wave off the prosecution.

  • 7. Arresting

The Police have the right to arrest anyone in the country, including foreigners. However, some arrest will require arrest warrant while some will not require one. If a person is caught by a police officer, committing a crime, they will be arrested without a warrant. Without a warrant, the Police can also arrest people who they suspect to have committed a crime. Furthermore, if a person is accused to have committed a crime, the accused can be arrested without a warrant.

  • 8. Searching persons, premises and belongings

The Police have the right to search for persons, premises and belongings. This body can search persons if they are suspected to possess something illegal, or if they are suspected to possess something by illegal means. In most cases, searching of premises and belongings require warrant.

  • 9. Taking measurements, photographs, and fingerprints

The Police can take measurements, photographs and fingerprints of people who have been put in custody lawfully. The essence of taking measurements, photographs and fingerprints are for identification.

Limitations on Power of The Police

The Police have the right to exercise certain powers on citizens. However, there are limitations to the power of the body.

  1. The Police are not allowed to exercise unnecessary force or violence. Any police that violate this limitation has gone against the law.
  2. In the process of carrying out duties, for example, when a person’s house is being searched, police personnel are required to execute their duty with confidentiality.
  3. Police personnel is not allowed to take bribes. Any personnel who takes bribe will be dealt with by the body. Furthermore, police personnel is not allowed to partake in any corrupt practice.
  4. Every police officer serves the country for the good of the people. They are expected not to go against the following: liberty, equality, and justice.

The Nigerian Police Force NPF

The NPF is a body of trained Nigerians who are legally instilled with power, to carry out certain functions in the country. This body’s existence can be traced back to 1820. The body is primarily tasked to enforce the law in the country. With a staff strength of about 371,800 personnel, the operations of this body span across the 36 states of Nigeria and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) of Nigeria.

Functions of the Nigerian Police Force, Duties, and Roles

Provision of the powers of Nigeria Police Force was stated in Section 23 of the Police Act, and the force was created under Section 194 of the 1979 constitution as with exclusive jurisdiction throughout the country. There is also constitutional provision for the establishment of separate branches of the Nigerian Police Force (NPF), “forming part of the armed forces of the Federation or for their protection of harbours, waterways, railways, and airfields.” Examples of such branches are the Port Security Police, the Mobile Police (MOPOL) and lots more.

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