By Gift Olivia Samuel, The Sight News
ABUJA: Following the need to have duty bearers discuss their operational roles, perspectives and challenges in curtailing the rising insecurity situation in the wake of existential threats and the increasing crisis of internal security in the country, the CLEEN Foundation Wednesday organized a roundtable discussion on Internal Security Management in Nigeria.
The roundtable, which had key state actors and security agencies in attendance, highlighted the primary responsibility of the government which is the protection of lives and properties within the State, which led to the creation of institutions saddled with the responsibility to maintain peace and order within the country.
As such, there is the Nigeria Police, and other key paramilitary agencies in the country, that are all working towards fulfilling the mandate of the government.
In her welcome remarks, the Acting Executive Director of CLEEN Foundation, Mrs Ruth Olofin, noted that the last two decades in Nigeria has recorded a level of insecurity more than any other time in the history of the country so far.
She pointed out that the seeming challenges in the ability of the state to address these challenges squarely are seeing an increase in the reliance on private security actors and a call for more localized policing architecture in the communities.
According to her, CLEEN Foundation organized the internal security management roundtable so as to create a platform for critical stakeholders to discuss their roles in the management of internal security in Nigeria with a view to creating synergies and partnerships that can foster greater peace and security in the country.
“It is our expectation that at the end of this roundtable, we will witness an intensification of collaborative mechanisms through intelligence led policing, greater accountability for offenders within the ambit of the law and improved citizen security as a cardinal responsibility of the state.
“As we countdown to the November 6th gubernatorial elections in Anambra state, it is our earnest hope that the elections will be conducted in a safe and peaceful atmosphere, and that the security of lives and properties of the voters and all election stakeholders including security officials will be guaranteed pre, during and post the elections”, she concluded.
In his keynote address, the Chairman/Board of Trustees CLEEN Foundation, Prof. Etannibi Alemika, pointed out that problems that create insecurity are local, adding that law enforcement agencies cannot solve problems created by politicians.
The Professor of Criminology, University of Jos, who spoke on the topic, “Contemporary Security Challenges & Internal Security Management in Nigeria, also noted that security and development are intertwined, stating that Nigeria requires comprehensive sector-wide reform to establish democratic security governance that will produce and sustain legitimate, responsive, effective and accountable security agencies in the country.
“At the structural level, there is need for adherence to constitutional provisions, generally and especially sections 4,5,6, 10, chapters 2 and 4 as well as the articulation of national core values and interests through wide consultations.
“Therefore, internal security management should be pursued through multi-sectoral platforms consisting of economic and socio-political policies aimed at guaranteeing citizens’ freedom from violence (conflict, crime, terrorism and repression); fear (engendered by lack of military, economic, social and political governance capacity by the state) and want (poverty, deprivations, discrimination, etc.).
“To achieve these, there is need to maintain strong, equipped, motivated, responsive, professional, effective, efficient and accountable public service and security agencies under democratic oversight”, he concluded.
For his part, the Chairman of the Occasion, Gen Saleh Maina (Retd), expressed hopes that the event will strengthen collaboration among security agencies in Nigeria, as there will be no security without development.
While stressing on the need to review the country’s system, he appealed to participants to brainstorm on the security challenges and find lasting solutions to the problems rather than engaging in blame games.
“I appeal to the government to listen to sincere bodies that mean well for the country, such as CLEEN Foundation, I hope that this regime will not bequeath insecurity to it’s successor in 2023”, he noted.
Also present at the meeting which was supported by Ford Foundation were; representatives of the Federal Ministry of Police Affairs, the Nigerian Police Force, Security and Civil Defence Corps, amongst others.