Governor Nasir El-Rufai, of Kaduna State is calling on the Federal Government to quickly set and act on the three specific recommendations of the All Progressive Congress Committee on True Federalism to curb the upsurge of violence and chaos in the country.
El-Rufai made this statement when he spoke at the live broadcast tagged; The Fierce Urgency of Now: Tactics and Strategies to Pull Nigeria from the Brink,’ on Friday, stated that Nigeria had failed “jealously and consistently protect its prerogatives and status as a leviathan, the ultimate guarantor of security, the protector of rights and the promoter of the rule of law.”
He said, “I would recommend the following immediate decisions and actions by the federal and state governments, with the support of our civil society and all well-meaning Nigerians. The first is to implement the three key devolution proposals that I mentioned: Give us state police now; vest all minerals in the states now; and decentralize our judiciary now – not later.
“There are certain things governors cannot do. Some of them we have alluded to by saying we don’t control security agencies. So, you are the chief security officer, but you can call the CP (commissioner of police), and if the IG (Inspector General) says, ‘Don’t talk to him,’ that is it.
“In five and a half years, as Governor of Kaduna State, I have had eight commissioners of police. They are just posted; they spend seven or eight months (each) on average. Do the mathematics. Eight CPs that have virtually no say in their posting, and so on. How can you have security management if you change the frontline chief of security every eight months on average?”
El-Rufai added that “There is nothing the governors can do. And these senators and House of Representatives members were elected from states. Many of them got elected with our help and support, but when they go to Abuja, they can grow large heads and will not cut their hair for two years, and they start thinking something else. I had one like that; I got him out.
“We want states to have more responsibilities so that we can be held more accountable. The reason I said we need state police, a decentralized judiciary, and the vesting of mines, minerals, and oils in states now is because if we don’t do it this year, next year, everything will be politicized.”
In response, the Senate Minority Leader, Senator Enyinnaya, who was also a speaker on occasion, said, “Governor El-Rufai has said, ‘Let us all work together.’ We are very ready to do that.”
“None of the military services nor other security agencies has been suitably expanded in numbers and equipment for over a decade since the insurgency in the North-East pushed things to a new law.
“This country does not have enough soldiers, uniformed police, or secret police to project state power across its vast swaths, particularly the forests. The limited number of boots on the ground are not well-equipped and are significantly lacking in the technology that can make their limited numbers matter a lot less.
“We should provide immediate and enhanced funding to acquire advanced equipment, armaments and ordinances for the armed forces, police, security agencies, and paramilitary agencies by drawing down from the pool of various rainy day federation funds like the Excess Crude Account, Natural Resources Account, Stabilisation Account, and so on so that our security services will have the material to face the criminals that menace us. “
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