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Buhari

Decentralise funding of police operations and foster true community policing by complementing direct transfer of funding to police divisions

In the face of rising insecurity, Nigeria has seen many debates on the effectiveness of the country’s police, especially how it is funded and run from Abuja.

Buhari promised to change this by ensuring a direct transfer from the federation account to police divisions. To make good on this promise, he signed the Nigeria Police Trust Fund bill into law in 2019. 

Section 4 of the Nigeria Police Trust Fund Act says that the fund would consist of 0.5% of the funds accruing in the federation account and 0.005% of the net profit of companies operating in Nigeria. The fund has a few other sources of income including aids, grants, endowments and donations. 

The fund is meant to train police officers, enhance their efficiency and purchase equipment. 

The federation account receives the country’s revenue from oil, taxes and other sources before it is shared among the federal, state and local governments.

According to media reports, the Federal Account Allocation Committee announced in April 2020 that deduction for the police fund was about to start. 

The government of Rivers state sued the federal government in May 2020 for unlawful deduction from the federation account. The courts ruled the deduction unconstitutional and ordered a refund to the Rivers state government. 

The judgment stopped a major income source for the police fund and there is no evidence the federal government has appealed. But it is not clear to what extent the ruling has affected transfer of funds to police divisions.   

– Africa Check, updated May 2022

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