Torrents of encomiums and commendations from prominent Nigerians and foreigners alike were showed on Assistant Commissioner of Police, ACP Olasunkanmi Olasoji Akinbayo, the Area Commander of Area ‘B’ Command Headquarters Apapa, Lagos state for giving the dilapidated Command a facelift.
The occasion of the commissioning of the new two blocks of fifteen (15) offices, laundry block, renovated recreation and conference halls, an administrative building and a full interlocking concrete premises in Area “B” command by ACP Olasoji Akinbayo presided by the Assistant Inspector General of Police, AIG Ahmed Ilyasu in charge of zone 2 Command Onikan, Lagos on Tuesday, January 19, 2021, witnessed the crème de la crème in the society especially, in the security sector.
AIG Illyasu who represented the Inspector-General of Police IGP MA Adamu was visibly overwhelmed and impressed by the enormity of renovation works carried out by ACP Akinbayo with the assistance of some of his good spirited friends in the community to give the Area “B” Command a unique posture, describing the gesture as not only commendable but the victory of community policing.
“The new look of Area ‘B’ Command today is as a result of the collaboration, innovation and ingenuity of the Area Commander, Area B Command, ACP Olasoji Akinbayo and the good people of Apapa. While officers must have thorough understanding of community needs, they must also lay emphasis on treating community members with respect, justly, fairly and equitably. Involvement of key community members in policing the community requires reciprocity and foundation of trust and mutual responsiveness. It is my prayer that the bond between the Police and community that yielded this outstanding result in Apapa today will be replicated in other parts of Lagos State and Nigeria. The inspector General of Police IGP Adamu Mohammed is full of gratitude to all distinguished Nigerians who exhibited this high level of social responsibility in completing this project,” AIG Illyasu said.
Shortly before the AIG’s speech, Governor Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State represented by Dr. Ayo Ogunsa of the Lagos State Security Trust Fund, described ACP Akinbayo as a transformational leader whose innovativeness needs emulation; adding that what was been witnessed is the best transformational leadership which is non-existing in most Police officers. “ACP Akinbayo has shown that he is a transformational leader and we can only pray that that the Almighty God continues to bless him, his family and above all, his management team,” Sanwo-olu prayed.
Earlier in his welcome address, an elated ACP Akinbayo expressed gratitude to the guests who he said graced the occasion in spite of their tight schedules, stressing that the project billed for commissioning was a modest way of contributing to the Nigeria Police Force.
“This is not a speech making occasion, rather it is to thank the Almighty God for giving us the zeal to accomplish this in line with the Inspector-General of Police IGP Mohammed Adamu’s visions of policing with human face. This is our modest contribution to the upliftment of the Nigeria Police Force, Area ‘B’ Command Apapa, Lagos. When we arrived here some months ago, those who were and still here can bear witness to the entire structure and environmental degradation that was the lot of this Area Command. But today, we can comfortably say that the reverse is the case. This is why we shall be honoring those who contributed in one way or another to the success of this project. This is community policing in action, ACP Akinbayo said.
Akinbayo who was the man of the moment told the bewildered audience that when he wanted to embark on the renovation of the Command, most of friends and colleagues called to discourage and mocked him on the ground that he was doing it to curry sympathy from the high and might in society. Others he said, even called his wife to dissuade him from carrying on with the project and pocket the money instead but, instead of getting discouraged, he was resolute to doing what God has planted him. He said,
“Permit to correct one impression that the renovation records that have been associated with me wherever I am posted to is merely to curry the sympathy of the high and mighty in the society. This is not true. Wherever I am posted to, I ensured that the environment is habitable and conducive for me and my team to operate in. As we all know, cleanliness is next to godliness. As Police officers, we spend ample hours of our daily lives in the office and I do not see anything wrong in keeping or renovating my Command to such an extent that will improve service delivery of my officers and men.
“I remember when we started clearing the junkyard upon assumption of office here at Area “B”, some senior officers called to mock me that I had started again and that Police work should not be taken to high heavens. Others called to discourage me that I was wasting my time and energy in a Command that I won’t spend more than a year or at most two years. But I was resolute to do what I know how to do best as a firm believer that your working environment talks so much about your person,” Akinbayo explained.
Prominent among those who graced the occasion were Oba Abdul-Fatai Aromire Oyegbemi 11(Oba Ojora of Ijora Kingdom), Dr. Ayo Ogunsan of LSSTF, Hon. Elijah Adele, Chairman, Apapa LGA, other chairmen of the community, Mr. Francis Bartholomew (Legit), Alhaji Musliu Ayinde Akinsanya (MC Oluomo) state chairman NURTW and several others.