The immediate past Commissioner of Police in Lagos, Assistant Inspector General (AIG) Hakeem Odumosu, has taken a bow out of the Force, barely 24 hours after handing over the baton of leadership at the state’s Command to the newly appointed CP, Abiodun Alabi.
Odumosu’s retirement, witnessed by the state Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, and Chairman, the Police Service Commission (PSC) and former Inspector General of Police (IGP), Musiliu Smith, came after serving the law enforcement agency for 32 years.
The AIG took a bow at the Pull-out parade and valedictory ceremony organised in his honour by the Lagos State Government on Tuesday at the Police Training Ground in Ikeja.
In his valedictory speech, Odumosu, accompanied by his wife, Nafisat, said he was not leaving the Force out of tiredness, but quitting to experience a civil life, having attained mandatory retirement age.
He noted that his decision to join the police was not out of joblessness but his desire to serve his fatherland after his first degree in Arts at Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) in Zaria, Kaduna State.
Odumosu, who also holds a Law degree, two Master’s degrees, and Diploma certificates, advised young officers to embrace discipline, which he described as the “bedrock of the Force”.
He said: “I want to make it known that, despite challenges I faced in the course of my career, I have no regret joining the Force. The police properly groomed me to become a professional law enforcement officer that can stand tall among his peers anywhere in the world.
“As Lagos Rapid Response Squad (RRS) Commander, the job toughened me to frontally confront daredevil armed criminals whose passion was robbing banks. Since then, bank robbery incidents in Lagos nosedived. Today, I am proud to say that there was no single bank robbery throughout my tenure as Commissioner of Police in Lagos.
“It is time for me to quit the state and continue my journey into civil life. I have played my role and delivered my line. I am retiring today, but I am not tired. Nigeria Police Force will continue to be my constituency.”
Odumosu, meanwhile, thanked the national leader of the All Progressives Congress leader, Bola Tinubu, Sanwo-Olu, and Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola for being pillars of support throughout his service years in Lagos.
Addressing the gathering, Sanwo-Olu described Odumosu as “nemesis” of criminally-minded elements, noting that the ex-Lagos Commissioner of Police had a deep knowledge of the nooks and crannies of the State.
The Governor thanked the outgoing AIG for his service to Lagos during which the State recorded a receding crime rate and that he attended to his constitutional duties with vigour, courage and without giving excuses, adding that he led officers serving in the State’s Police Command from the front throughout his tenure as Commissioner.
“Hakeem Odumosu’s appointment in November 2019 as Commissioner of Police in Lagos came with much expectation, as it was believed that his arrival would bring the long-sought succour which many Lagosians yearned given the security challenges facing the State then. These expectations came as a result of his very deep knowledge and understanding of what the security architecture of Lagos should be.
“Tango One, as we all call him, came with a wealth of experience, and new approaches to pursue effective policing. Those approaches led to an improvement in the security of lives and property in Lagos. He came, he saw and he is bequeathing a well-informed and motivated police command to officers serving in Lagos. He discharged his duties with diligence and emerged as an outstanding police officer. I am happy to be at this occasion, which is a deserving farewell to AIG Hakeem Odumosu out of the Nigeria Police Force.”
Sanwo-Olu said Odumosu led the police in Lagos at challenging periods, pointing out that his stewardship brought back to discipline and deepened character across hierarchies in the Command, especially the rank and file.
The Governor said Odumosu was leaving a big shoe in the Command, given his meritorious accomplishment as a crime buster. He charged the new Commissioner of Police, Abiodun Alabi, to take up the gauntlet and build on the structure laid by his predecessor.
“It would be a disservice to AIG Odumosu if the level of policing in Lagos goes down after this moment. The least we can do is to ensure the labour of Odumosu is not in vain. I charge the new Commissioner of Police and all officers serving in Lagos Command to show renewed commitment to fight crimes and ensure the security of lives is raised to the level where the State would be the envy of others in the country,” Sanwo-Olu added.