Nigerian governors endorse state police

Governors of the thirty-six states in Nigeria have endorsed the recent advocacy to establish state police and make it part of the country’s constitution.

The Governors under the auspices of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF), confirmed this latest development in Monday at the end of a two day National Security Summit held in Abuja.

Chairman of the forum, and Governor of Zamfara state, ALHAJI Abdulaziz Yari while addressing Journalists on the outcome of the summit, also confirmed that the issue of state police was agreed as far back as 2015 but it could not see the light of the day because of the political Wranglings that rocked the NGF at that time.

According to him, the Governors and other stakeholders that participated in the summit are already brainstorming on the best strategy for implementing the state policing system.

Governor Yari also believes that all the states of the Nigeria federation may not immediately embrace the new policing system when legalised, noting that adoption and implementation of state police would be according to the capacity of each state.

“If a state like Lagos, as mighty as it is in its economy can fund its state police, what it means is that, the number of federal police in Lagos state will be reduced, and the excess redeployed to surrounding states like Osun, Ekiti, and Ondo states that may not be able to fund state police at the take-off point.

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The same thing is applicable to Rivers and Kano states, as mighty as they are in their economy, they can start implementing state police system once it comes on board and states around them including my state can benefit from it because, if we cannot afford it, then the federal police in Kano would be reduced and redeployed to Zamfara, while that of Rivers will be shared for states like Cross Rivers, Bayelsa and so on,” he explained.

Some of the participants at the summit, while expressing optimism that the summit will tackle the security challenges in the county, stressed the need for the country to start a healing process. Senator Gershom Bassey believes that the two day event will enlighten the lawmakers to know the areas that need legislation, “so that we can contribute our quota to resolving some of the issues. A lot of suggestions have come up and at the end of the day I am optimistic the summit will be of immense value to addressing the challenges,” he said.

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According to Senator Victor Umeh, “there is need for the country to start a healing process going back to those things that agitate the minds of the people things that make people protest .there are all kinds of demands being made, some restructuring, some people talking about how they were left behind in the affairs of the country, go to the people to dialogue with them and bring the confidence on government back.”

In a communiqué signed by the Chairman of the Senate ad-hoc committee on the review of Nigeria’s security architecture, Senator Ahmed Lawan, the Summit reassured Nigerians that all arms of government are serious about addressing insecurity, and are working collaboratively to find solutions. “Out of the whole-of-government effort, Nigerians can expect a higher level of security to protect lives and property,” the statement added.

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