Posted by News Express | 1 February 2021 | 599 times
A committee to work out the framework for the establishment of a Southsouth security outfit has been constituted by the six governors of the zone.
Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike, who disclosed this in Port Harcourt on Monday, accused the former Service Chiefs and the Police of playing politics with the security situation in the country.
The governor also faulted President Muhammadu Buhari’s claim that the security situation in the country had improved since 2015, saying even his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) said “ insecurity has gotten to a level we cannot bear again.”
He equally spoke on the proposed amendment to the Electoral Act and warned that it could turn out a charade if card reader is not allowed not determine the validity of every vote cast.
Although Wike did not state the timeline given the committee to complete its assignment, he said the chairman of the Southsouth Governors, Forum and Delta State Governor, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, would announce the outcome.
“The Southwest has come up with its own Amotekun. We are coming up with something. It is not in my position to let the cat out of the bag. It will be done. Our chairman will announce it to the world,” the governor said in a statement by his Special Assistant Media, Kelvin Ebiri.
He applauded the President for accepting the resignation of the service chiefs and urged their successors to shun politics and concentrate on strategies that would expeditiously end insurgency in the country.
Wike said many Nigerians lost confidence in the former service chiefs hence they mounted pressure on Buhari to sack them.
The governor also pointed out that despite the withdrawal of $1bn (about N450bn) from the Excess Crude Account to procure armament to fight the insurgents, security had continued to deteriorate.
His words: “They (Service Chiefs) must understand that the challenges are enormous and so they have a lot of work to do. They should not concern themselves with politics.
“Part of the problem we had with former the Service Chiefs, was that they were involved in politics. Instead of concentrating on the security of the nation, they were very much involved in politics. Nobody can deny that fact. The moment you politicise security, then you are bound to have problems.”
Wike was particularly unhappy with the way the immediate past Chief of Army Staff. Gen. Tukur Buratai discharged the functions of his office.
He cited the arrest and detention of recruits of the Rivers State Neighbourhood Watch Safety Corps who were undergoing training to buttress his claim that the former CAS was politically biased in the discharge of his duties.
Wike said: “So many states were setting up their own security outfits, Burutai allowed them…. When Rivers State by law set neighbourhood Watch to give intelligence to security agencies, the former Chief of Staff came into politics.”
The governor described as erroneous President Buhari’s claim that the security situation in the country had improved far beyond what the situation was when he assumed office in 2015.
He noted that the Federal Government and the police high command were playing politics with the scheme.
His words: “If you want this country to move forward, it is important that the states must take control of the security apparatus of their state.
“The need for community policing is necessary, but what is the problem is that the Federal Government comes up to say, they will support community policing, but where have they supported it.
“They said they want to do community policing and they called traditional rulers to seek their cooperation. But do you know every name submitted by the traditional rulers, council areas, the police changed everything. It became political
He observed that several attempts to achieve a credible electoral reform had been mired by overriding personal ambition of persons with vested political interests within and outside the National Assembly.
Wike said because most National Assembly members were preoccupied with the next election, they were always tempted to skew the electoral amendment Act in their favour and that of their political party.
He said: “Why didn’t the President sign the last amendment Electoral Act, why? Because APC as a party had informed the president that if you sign this electoral amendment, you are likely to lose the election. Therefore, don’t sign it. And of course, the President did not sign the electoral amendment Act.
“I am not carried away by the antics of the National Assembly. They all know what will make the country move forward. One, make the election to be transparent by ensuring that all votes are counted. You can achieve that by allowing the card reader to function. So that the figures recorded on the card reader should tally with the transmitted figures.”
On the rumour that he intends to run for the office of the President in 2023, the governor said his political detractors were behind the circulation of posters with his name and pictures in Abuja.
He said: “They have money to print posters for me. I thank them for telling Nigerians that they want me to run for President. No Nigerian can say I have ever met him, discussed with him that I want to run for President. That does not mean I am not a qualified person, but I have never come out to say I want to run.” (The Nation)
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