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Prioritise Nigerians’ security, lawmakers urge Tinubu

Opposition lawmakers in the House of Representatives have called on President Bola Tinubu to prioritise the security of lives and property better than what the administration of Muhammadu Buhari did in eight years.

Under the immediate past administration, insurgency, kidnapping and all manner of criminality reached an all-time high, prompting the international community to issue several travel advisories, warning their citizens to steer clear of troubled spots in Nigeria.

Since the inauguration of Tinubu as President, kidnapping for ransom has witnessed a spike, particularly in the Federal Capital Territory, prompting many Nigerians to call on the Minister, Nyesom Wike, to put on his thinking cap to make the territory safer for all.

Speaking with Saturday PUNCH on Friday, a member of the House and Chairman, Committee on Judiciary, Oluwole Oke, lamented that though insecurity was not peculiar to Nigeria, the situation in the country was becoming too worrisome for everyone who wished the nation well.

Oke, a chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party, in a telephone interview with our correspondent, called on President Tinubu to address the manpower shortage within the ranks of the various security agencies.

He said, “There are a lot that this government can do better than the previous administration. We are not the first to experience this kind of situation. It happened in other advanced climes in the past and still happening in some other countries but not as bad as ours.

“You will recall when the service chiefs appeared before the House for sectoral briefings. I did observe that the security situation in which we found ourselves is result of poverty occasioned by neglect of the masses by the ruling class.

The armed forces, paramilitary institutions and intelligence communities need to massively recruit youths up to 500,000 in bigger states and 100,000 in smaller states.

“They should be camped and trained for three to six months, armed to the teeth with good remuneration package and deploy them to very strategic locations. Those we can’t deploy locally should be exported for peace keeping operations. This is the reason behind my sponsoring a bill on peace keeping operations.

“We also need to invest massively on intelligence gathering and equip all our security agencies with modern day technologies.”

Oke, while noting that his recommendations have huge financial implication, urged the Tinubu-led government not to shy away from its primary responsibility to the Nigerian citizens as enshrined in the 1999 Constitution (as amended).

On his part, a chieftain of the Social Democratic Party and member representing Karu/Keffi/Kokona Federal Constituency of Nasarawa State, Gbefwi Jonathan, urged the Federal Government to declare a state of emergency on security, noting that “without adequate security, no meaningful development will take place.”


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