The Nigeria Police is the institution charged with the responsibility of law enforcement in Nigeria. Maintenance of law and order is very crucial to the development of any nation. The Nigerian Police has a long history, dating as far back as 1820.

Currently, the institution has a staff strength of about 371,800 with plans in place to recruit more men to enable the institution efficiently discharge its duties.

In this article, we will be looking at the structure of the Nigerian Police, with focus on the ranking and departments.

Official Nigerian Police Force Ranking

The ranks of the Nigerian police force are listed below in descending order i.e from the highest to the lowest.

  • Inspector General
  • Deputy Inspector-General of Police
  • Assistant Inspector-General of Police
  • Commissioner of Police
  • Deputy Commissioner of Police
  • Assistant Commissioner of Police
  • Chief Superintendent of Police
  • Superintendent of Police
  • Deputy Superintendent of Police
  • Assistant Superintendent of Police
  • Inspector of Police
  • Sergeant Major
  • Sergeant
  • Corporal
  • Constable

Let’s discuss some of these ranks briefly.

The Inspector-General of Police(IG)

The Nigerian police is headed by an Inspector-General in accordance with section 215(2) of the 1999 Constitution.

The authority of command of the institution rests on shoulders of the IG and flows through the chain of command to any officer best positioned to implement any such order.

The Deputy Inspector-General of Police(DIG)

The next in command to the IG is the DIG. While there can be only one IG in the institution, there is room for multiple DIGs to assist the IG in the discharge of the duties. Any of the DIGs can act for the IG in his absence.

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The Asst. Inspector-General of Police(AIG)

The third highest rank in the Nigerian Police is the AIG. Officers on this rank can also act for the IG in his absence provided none of the DIGs are available to lead the institution at that moment.

The Commissioner of Police (In-charge of Contingents in a State) (CP)

Each state of the federation is assigned a Commissioner of Police who oversees the security apparatus of the state as the number one cop of that state.

The CP is however subject to the command of the officers ranked above him.

The Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP)

DCP assists the CP in handling the security of the state they are assigned to and can act on behalf of the CP in his absence.

The Asst. Commissioner of Police

Also assist the CP in securing the state they are assigned to and can step in for the CP in his absence if the DCP is also unavailable.

  • The Chief Superintendent of Police
  • The Superintendent of Police
  • The Deputy Superintendent of Police
  • The Asst. Superintendent of Police
  • The Inspector of Police
  • Sergeant Major
  • Sergeant
  • Corporal
  • Constable

Structure Of The Nigerian Police

The institution is quite large and is broken into 36 State Commands, grouped into 12 zones and 7 administrative organs. The current IGP of the Nigerian Police is Adamu Muhammed.

Organisational Structure

To enable the institution function effectively and maintain internal security of the nation, it structured in a way that aligns with the geo-political structure of the country.

The organisational structure as shown below also allows for supervisory formations.

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Force Headquarters

This is the national headquarters of the Nigerian Police.

Zonal Headquarters

There are 12 zones of the Nigerian police, each with its own headquarter. Each Zone is made up of a number of state commands.

State Commands Headquarters

Each state of the federation has a Police state command with its headquarter in the capital of the state. In total, there are 36 state commands.

Area Commands Headquarters

Each state command is broken into a number of Area commands. There is an headquarter for each area command too.

Divisional Police Headquarters

The area commands are further broken into Divisions.

Departments Of The Nigerian Police

Administratively, the Nigerian police is structured and divided into departments lettered A-G. Each department is assigned specific duties in addition to the general duty of policing they all do.


This department is concerned with supervision, direction, and coordination of all other departments of the institution.


This department is responsible for planning and organizing internal security measures. It also monitors the execution of such security measures across the country.


To help the force discharge its duties effectively, it needs certain are tools and equipment. The Logistics and supply department handles this.

This department handles issues pertaining to uniforms, construction and maintenance of police buildings and quarters, determination of cost of equipment such as vehicles and planes, bomb disposal equipment, force animals, arms & ammunition as well as other riot equipment etc.


The role of this department is clear from the name. It is concerned with criminal Investigations and intelligence.

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It handles issues concerning Interpol, Antiguitics, Forensic Matters, Crime Prevention Policies, Crime Records, Narcotics, Prosecution and Criminal Intelligence.


Handles issues pertaining to training and retraining of personnel of the Nigerian Police. The department formulates and implements training policy and plan for the Nigerian Police.


The ‘F’ department handles Research, Planning, Inspectorate Division, Management Information, Organization and Method.


ICT is a very important tool in the fight against crime which is why the Police has an entire department dedicated to this.

The department develops and implements ICT Policies and programs for the institution.

Office Of The Force Secretary

The office of the force secretary carries out the promotion and appointment, record keeping, and discipline of Superior Police Officers. It also handles Police Council meeting, Inter-Ministerial matters and Promotion Boards of the institution.


Internal security of a nation is a very important issue. A nation without adequate internal security cannot function effectively.

The Nigerian Police handles issues pertaining to internal security, maintenance of law and order and law enforcement in the country.

It is headed by an Inspector-General of Police who sits at the top of the chain of command. The institution is also broken down into a number of departments, units, and formations to help it secure the nation efficiently.

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