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Imo CP, Bolanta in Trouble

By Uzorma Nathan
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The Jewish-German born philosopher, Martin Buber, in his Man and His Image Work, holds that human exertions and art-creations are proceedings of the mental richness and composition of the art-creator, and as such, man is his image work. What he produces, is a reproduction of himself, of his existential components. One can interpret this aesthetic declaration on human ingenuity in various perspectives. On the human personality purview whereof qualitative personality produces qualitative actions, results and furthers the human community to greater heights, one finds ingenuity, virtuousness, swiftness to actions and dexterity as existential qualities that are innate and consolidate the personality of certain distinguished individuals, like the Imo CP, Bolanta. His security-solutions and achievements in the State are far away from serendipity. They are fruits of a well-informed, well-trained and dedicated field-worker Police leadership in the State.

Before assumption of Office, there were high rate of kidnappings in the State, occasioned by bad governance that has to do with Governor Rochas Okorocha. When the CP, Mr Bolanta came, the kidnapping incidents became highly minimised; and serenity now reigns even in the most tormented communities where the gangsters operate. (Though the Police have not really changed so to say due to various extortions) but different kidnapping gangs have been smashed by this Commissioner of Police. The amazing thing in the achievement of these feats is not that the Police did it but that he leads the team himself; a workaholic CP.

The spade of kidnappings and killings in Imo State, which rose very high before the CP was transferred to the State gave Bolanta great challenges and he sat sleeplessly in thought, to brainstorm and strategise means of solving the security problems. This thinking (like the abstract image that confronts the art-creator rightly) yielded expertise-solutions that point back to the originator-creativity-instinct, which is his personality and self composition as a distinguished high ranked Police Officer in the country. Bolanta is passing through sleepless nights, denying himself pleasures because of the security problems of the State. He is saddled with troubles on how to bring peace and security to lives and properties in Imo State. This disturbs him, because he has adequate security knowledge, and as a philosopher once said that “ignorance helps;” if somebody is ignorant of a solution, he does not border himself seeking for solutions. Bolanta himself not being ignorant of the solutions to the security problems of the State is suffering immensely with sleepless nights and unrest. If not that the Governor of Imo State is not the IG of Police and does not participate in the transfer of Police, I would have given him kudos but the fact is that Bolanta is not a Rescue Mission Police Officer.

The amazing thing Bolanta did was the recent smashing of a gang of kidnapping operators that have been operating in Orodo. He exceedingly demonstrated his skill as a highly trained Officer of the Nigerian Police Force; his proactive measures in handling issues have distinguished him from other CPs and from his Predecessors, and with the pace he has set, if other successors will follow this step, Imo would be safe.

In one of his security strategies, Bolanta avowed a policy of demolishing certified properties of any person or group of persons proven to be kidnappers in Imo State. Faithful to his words and accompanied by actions, Bolanta has demolished a building and seized a landed property belonging to a kidnapper at Orsu-Obodo, Oguta LGA and had ensured that the criminal was executed as the law sanctioned; while four other certified members of the gang now suffer with the Army at Obinze while waiting for their journeys to eternity and the demolitions of their properties that have been already confiscated by the Police. He has also bulldozed a storey building, squeezed Jeeps, provisions store and also seized landed properties belonging to a certified kidnapper at Mgbidi, Oru West LGA, even though the criminal escaped. Bolanta has also bulldozed a duplex in the Obilubi area of Owerri, which was confirmed to be the property of a distinguished kidnapper, etc. The CP, Bolanta, is also vigorously working to unravel the perpetrators and killers of the Deputy Governor's Protocol Officer, Late Mr Laz Anyanwu who was kidnapped and murdered by unknown hoodlums on the 3rdweek of January.

The people of Oguta Urban (Amaeshi) in Oguta LGA can testify to the dexterity with which Bolanta and the Security Agents in the State handled the January crisis and killings that made the ancient city live in fear and societal unrest due to terrorist activities of some miscreant youths in the area that sent eight youths instantly to their early graves. Within 48 Hours, profound peace reigned in that ancient city as if nothing ever happened there. Who can man and handle such crisis with swiftness and urgency and with veritable success if not a master strategist, a fieldworker-leader and a well-informed and solution-packed CP as Bolanta.

Another problem that disturbs the CP is the orthodox bribery that has for ages characterized the Nigerian Police Force. Like a “non-Nigerian Police Officer,” Bolanta frowns at bribery and corruption, and from my observations on him, the only CP he could be likened unto is Mohammad Abubakar. While discussing with a friend last week about the life and bureaucratic principles of zero bribery with which Bolanta is known, Stanley U Okoroji never wasted a second to exclaim, “A Police man abhorring bribery in Nigeria? Impossible! It is there blood, how can the Police circulatory system work?” But that is Bolanta for you. Exceptions are rare in cases of traits as he saw it, and it is only with rare gems like the Bolanta, Mohammad Abubakar, and very few others that might convince him that some virtuous Police Officers still work in Nigeria. It is also his type of personality that should be looked upon as role models, even though paragon of excellence in service is absolutely impossible, but Bolanta's Police Force service composition is an imitable personality, whose mindset, ingenuity and swiftness in action-responses is a typical sample for reformation and re-orientation for erring younger officers in the service.

Consequently, Bolanta has to work on the psyche of his Police on the issue of the #20, #20 extortions on the road that has become their daily tithes on road users. This phenomenon is what the likes of Stanley U Okoroji and most other Nigerians would grasp at the first instance as point against virtuosity among serving Police Officers. It not only drags the image of the Nigerian Police to the mud but also toasts it in the mires before the presence of non-Nigerians and non-Africans who see bribery (especially with the Police, which is the most officially verifiable form of corruption going on in the Nigerian polity today) as synonymous with the Nigerian bureaucracy and Police Force..

Though Imo has not totally be ridded of the remaining minor crimes in the State, Bolanta in less than one year has calmed down several upheavals State-wise and restored peace, security and order in menaced societies. One can boldly state that if kidnapping was 70% before, it has been reduced to 50%, and the State is day to day moving on towards a crime-free human society, where lives and properties are well secured. What gives him greater trouble is to work and finish off the remaining percentage. This is what Bolanta is in now.