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“Stop packing your men inside pick up vans like sardines”- Onanuga tells Police IGP, Chief of Army Staff, NSA

A renowned Nigerian journalist and former managing director of the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, Bayo Onanuga has urged security chiefs in Nigeria to employ better and modernized means of transporting their men.


Mr Onanugo made this known while discouraging the old practice of beefing up several security operatives in small trucks or pick-ups during police operations.

He made the call on his verified X (formerly Twitter) account on Tuesday.

According to Mr Onanuga who is the Chief Executive Officer of the PM news and former director, Media and Publicity, Tinubu/Shettima Campaign during the 2023 presidential elections, the idea of using vans and packing up to eight men of the security forces in the name of security patrol is archaic and must be changed immediately.

The journalist said maintaining such practices only expose the security operatives to risk of loosing their men in the case of sn attack as they may be easily ambushed and eliminated at once.

He further urged the security chiefs in the country including Inspector General (IGP) of the Nigerian Police Force, NPF, Kayode Egbetokun; the chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Taoreed Lagbaja and the National Security Adviser (NSA), Nuhu Ribadu to device employ better means of transporting security operatives in the country.

Mr Onanugo wrote:

“Dear IGP, Chief of Army Staff, NSA,

“Please stop packing your men inside pick up vans like sardines, in the name of security patrol. They become easy targets and sitting ducks for annihilation by the enemy.
I wonder why we keep doing the same thing for decades and we keep getting the same tragic result. Drop the idea of using the vans and packing up to eight people inside it.
The idea is archaic and we must change it immediately.

“Henceforth, buy bullet proof cars for your men to do patrols and put only two of them in each vehicle.

“They will be more nimble-footed if attacked or if they run into ambush like some of your men did today in Ehime Mbano, Imo State. I do not need to be a soldier or a policeman to offer this advice. It’s mere common sense.”

Recall that some security operatives numbering eight were on Tuesday, ambushed and set ablaze by unknown gunmen in Imo State.

The attack which was carried out in Umualumaku community, Ehime Mbano Local Government Area of the state, involved security agents comprising soldiers, policemen and Nigeria Security And Civil Defence Corps.

As was seen in videos and pictures already gone viral, the slain joint security taskforce team were in two security trucks when they were attacked, killed and set ablaze.

It was also gathered that none of the security operatives survived the attack as they were burnt inside their operational vehicles.

Meanwhile, a security operative who spoke on condition of anonymity told newsmen that reinforcement teams were promptly sent to the scene of the crime with the intent to arrest the suspects and rescue the corpses of the slain security operative.

A resident in the community who also pleaded not to be mentioned said that he saw the security agents a few minutes before they were set ablaze adding that the community had been thrown into confusion, owing to the development.

Imo State Police spokesperson, Henry Okoye yesterday, confirmed the development.

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