Focus on police reforms and war against poverty, HURIWA tells President Buhari

Posted by News Express | 31 May 2015 | 3,089 times

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The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has charged the newly inaugurated President Muhammadu Buhari to pay great attention towards achieving holistic police reforms and to wage total war against mass poverty.

In a statement by the National Coordinator Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko and the National Media affairs Director Miss Zainab Yusuf, HURIWA also tasked the new Federal government to begin without further delay the comprehensive overhaul of the anti-graft machinery by appointing tested, trusted, fearless, incorruptible, and professionally competent persons to head the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Independent Corrupt practices and other offences commission (ICPC). Current leadership of the two anti corruption agencies have compromised in a very unpleasant dimension, HURIWA alleges.

In the thinking of HURIWA the incoming National Assembly should quickly move to amend the enabling laws setting up the two anti-corruption agencies to create room for the central government to hunt for globally respected anti corruption experts from any part of the World to assume headship of either of the two anti-graft bodies.

“We urge that the incoming government should completely eschew partisan politics in the composition of new sets of persons to run the two anti corruption agencies so they can be headed by good people sourced from either Nigeria or any parts of the World. We acknowledge that corruption is at the centre of the mass poverty afflicting nearly 90 million Nigerians and the only way to comprehensively battle and conquer mass poverty is the waging of relentless war against economic crimes and all ramifications of corruption.

“It is our suggestion that even a white American or a Briton with considerable records as good anti corruption experts can be hired by the Nigerian Government to spearhead a new war against the hydra headed monster of corruption in Nigeria.

“The current set up of both anti graft agencies whereby officers of the Nigerian Police play pivotal hierarchical roles is not right because from available records these two agencies dominated by the Police drawn from the Nigerian Police Force with poor records of professionalism and discipline has frustrated the war against corruption that would comply with global best practices.

“This evil status quo must be overthrown if the change mantra is to have any pragmatic relevance to Nigerians who are clamouring for immediate revolutionary changes in the fight against heist of public fund by politically exposed persons in the corridors of power,” the statement said.

On police reforms, the rights group said the existing policing structure has abysmally failed demanding surgical overhaul of the entire foundations of the Nigeria Police Force. 

 “We call for the establishment of State police as recommended by the moribund National Political Conference organised by the last Jonathan-led Federal Government. So long as the Nigerian policing institution remains largely ineffective and inefficient due to fundamentally defective structure and composition, the security situation of Nigeria will continue to deteriorate.

“Any nation without an effective policing institution will continuously face crises of insecurity of lives and property of the citizenry which directly breaches the primary purpose of government as contemplated in the Nigerian Constitution which recognise the security of lives and welfare of Nigerians as the primary duty of government.

“We call for comprehensive investigations of the police and defence budgets from 1999 to date to determine how humongous public fund meant to secure national security interest progressively disappeared into private pockets of top Generals and police chiefs over the years.

"These looted public funds must be repatriated and returned to public treasury and the looters named, shamed, prosecuted diligently and appropriately sanctioned by the competent court of law,” the group stated.

•Photo shows Onwubiko

Source: News Express

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