….as retired IGP Abubakar calls for operational policy review
By Ado Hassan, Sokoto
SULTAN of Sokoto and President General, Nigeria Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs(NSCIA) Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar has said that Nigerians have to be frank and open towards tackling security challenges threatening the peace of the country.
” We need to be blunt and open to enable us forge ahead with better ideas,options and measures based on quality decisions against the issue of insecurity in the State and country.”
Abubakar spoke Wednesday in Sokoto at the Alumni Association of the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies Sokoto chapter organised roundtable on the security challenges of Sokoto state and its neighbours.
Accordingly, the revered leader who is also the the heritage council chair on army of the Alumni noted that NIPSS as an academy and security entity has the responsibility of shaping the society against all odds by making citizens and the country better.
He stressed the need to embrace the the teeming youths on issues of national and socioeconomic interests to the development of the country in order to engender peace, unity and harmony.
” Love Nigeria first before any other thing. We should not create what it didn’t happen “, he said.
According to Abubakar, religious leaders were an important integral nucleus in driving positive courses , hence have to be carried along on national security issues.
Similarly, Abubakar pointed out the need for Sokoto state to study the composition of the multinational force and come up with similar idea to address the menace of security challenges in the axis.
” We need to build a strong relationship
with neighbouring countries of Niger, Chad , Cameroun and other nations in the Sahel as Mali and Sudan
that strengthens our focus against insecurity .”
The royal father while focusing on the media as veritable tool for sustaining peace, advised that there was no gain regulating the social media rather identify who is doing what ?
He lamented the high level of impunity being allowed without been checked , noting that” the media need not to inform people negatively and wrongly but positively and rightly on happenings for harmonious co-existence”, he remarked.
In his opening remarks , Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal who noted that the state and its neighbours were seriously partnering on common related issues bordering on security, health , education among others for the over all benefit of their people.
Tambuwal while acknowledging the resourcefulness and commitment of NIPSS in forging the country ahead, described its members as hub of knowledge that can offer better and dependable advise on responsive policies for implementation.
In tune with the Sultan, governor Tambuwal inspired participants to be frank in proffering solutions in concrete terms that would address insecurity problem.
” I was in Niger recently where I had important discussion with the President on security challenges affecting the two countries”, he explained.
Earlier in a keynote address, National President -Army of the Association retired IGP, Alhaji Muhammad Dahiru Abubakar while giving an over view of the security challenges in Nigeria, noted that the prevailing security challenges across the country’s six geopolitical zones were similar in disposition.
Though, Abubakar maintained that Nigeria is not the only country bearing the throes of security challenges , adding ” it is universal and owing to globalisation as they are relative on the scope of domestic socio-economic and political conditions.”
” I must point here that they are in different forms, scope and depth with peculiarities.
” Terrorism in the Northeast, armed banditry in Northwest, herders /farmers clashes and armed banditry in North central. Militancy and armed banditry are peculiar to the South south and South east zones while armed banditry is predominant in the South west.”
He said armed banditry which was in past, a marginal security issue has gained notoriety as most potent threat especially in the Northwest axis of the country comprising Sokoto, Kebbi, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina , Zamfara and Jigawa states occasioned by the prevailing socio-economic conditions.
However, the retired police Boss while observing measures taken by FG in tackling the menace noted the launch of strategic approach of the operations Hadarin Daji, Harbin Kunama, and Safe Heaven among others which failed to yield results leading to some of the States embarking on peace negotiation with bandits.
” Zamfara , Kastina and Sokoto States had to resort to this option but still not effectively changing he narrative”, he stated.
Abubakar said tackling the menace required new policy options to reposition the operational imperatives,responsive interface across political structures with effective line engagement of security by procuring and deployment of intelligence in all counter insurgency operations.
” We also need advanced weaponry and exploring enhanced technologies with proper border management, adequate military , law enforcement manpower personnel , deterring the use of small arms and light weapons as well revamping and redefining our security architecture with comprehensive national security policy among others “, he pointed out.
In his welcome address, the state chairman of the Alumni, Alhaji Abubakar Sokoto said the roundtable was sequel to the current security threats and situation in Sokoto state and the entire Northwest region which many lives were being lost across communities almost on daily basis.
According to him” many homes and families have been shattered .”
He explained that the essence was to proffer responsive solutions through purging out collective ideas in order to move the nation forward in atmosphere of peace, security and unity.
” We are out to evolve and create better and new grounds on the security situation that with give hope and support security agencies in their drive to counter the activities of bandits”, he stated .