From Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
Retired diplomat and chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Amb Simon Ejike Eze, has pleaded with state governors across the country to devote part of their monthly security votes to promote and facilitate information gathering by locals to aid the operations of security agencies.
He also expressed worry over the growing internal security challenges across the country, especially the spate of kidnappings and sundry violent crimes in the country.
According to the statement he issued in Abuja, he argued that the most effective means of curtailing the recurring security challenges in the states is through intelligence.
Eze, equally noted that the information provided by the people on ground that are usually processed into actionable intelligence for the security forces to use to nip the crisis in the bud.
Amb Eze commended the military and other security forces for their unwavering commitment in tackling internal security challenges across the country.
He reiterated that security is everybody’s business, adding that the people must play their own part in arresting the unfortunate situation by providing accurate and timely information to the security agents.
“The military and security agents cannot be everywhere and will not be able to know when things are going wrong, and in some cases, security agents have limitations due to terrain or cultural barriers and as such require the full cooperation and support of the people to be on top of the situation,” he said.
He added that the people’s attention needs to be drawn to the role or responsibility of the governors in the overall security architecture of the country, stressing that it is rather too lame for any governor to say he is helpless in times of crisis.
“It should be the responsibility of governors to ensure that the people are willing and able to cooperate with the security agents by providing timely information needed in staving off attacks or mitigating crisis,” he quipped.
Eze, one time Senior Special Assistant to President Olusegun Obasanjo, equally advised the governors to as a matter of utmost priority, deploy part of the humongous amount they set aside every month as security votes into intelligence gathering.
“The governors receive statutory allocation and set aside a large chunk as security vote; what do they do with the money? Are they not supposed to deploy such funds into intelligence gathering, and in so doing assist the security operatives in their domains to be on top of the evolving security breaches?
“Unfortunately, some of these governors divert these funds to other self-serving ventures and some don’t even relate with the people in such a way as to generate information from them, only to heap blames on the federal government each time there is crisis.
“So, it is not enough to make a show of the unfortunate situation in order to curry sympathy when you ignored the basic preventive measures or steps that will nip the crisis in the bud,” he argued.
The retired Diplomat and APC Enugu State chapter’s key stakeholder further noted that in spite of the machinations of some ill-intention politicians in the South East hell bent on poisoning the minds of the people with their unconscionable narratives, majority of people in the zone are solidly behind President Muhammad Buhari’s infrastructural transformation of the zone.
He said it was regrettable that some so-called leaders in the country are capitalizing on the unfortunate security challenges in the country to play politics.
He decried the antics of such politicians working tirelessly to poison the minds of the people with false and toxic narratives against the leadership of President Buhari.
Amb Eze warned that the protracted security challenges in the country is never in the interest of the people and admonished political actors and sectoral leaders to reevaluate their roles and do those things that will uplift and benefit the people instead of engaging in and pursuing self-serving, narrow political interests.
“We acknowledge that there are security problems in the country but they are not insurmountable. All it takes is for citizens to cooperate and support the government and the security agencies. Nigeria shall be great again,” he charged.