• Bags Zik Prize for Good Governance
Tony John, Port Harcourt
Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has inaugurated the Board of Directors of the Neighbourhood Safety Corps Agency, with a charge to the members to kick-start the process of recruiting quality operatives for the agency.
Performing the inauguration, yesterday, at the Government House, Port Harcourt, Wike said there is no going back on the establishment of the agency, because, it is central to the security of the state.
He said: “Use your experiences and capabilities to ensure the Neighbourhood Safety Corps Agency takes off effectively.
“Start the recruitment process of the operatives. By September 2018, I expect that the training of operatives would have been concluded and the agency fully operational.”
Members of the agency, are Brigadier General Dick Ironabare (chairman), Chief Casca Ogosu (member), Mr. Dennis Amachree (Member), Prof. Emenike Wami (member), Anthony Uzo Ozurumba (Member), Uche Mike Chukwuma (director general), Mrs Victoria Chikeka (member) and Nma Omereji (secretary/legal adviser).
He charged them not to be swayed by the antics of opponents of the establishment because their duty is vital to the stability of the state.
The governor alleged that some politicians have approached the police to sabotage the scheme by rejecting operatives recruited by the agency.
He said the state executive council would approach the House of Assembly for the amendment of the Neighbourhood Safety Corps Agency Law, so the police will not be required to vet the recruited operatives as is obtainable in Lagos State.
The governor advised the agency’s Board of Directors to recruit only persons who have the interest of the state at heart.
Wike said contrary to criticisms against the agency, they will only bear light arms subject to the approval of the police. He said the light arms to be borne by the agency’s operatives would be for self-defence.
In his response, Ironabare assured the government and people of the state that the agency would work to enhance state-wide security.
He commended the governor for deeming it necessary to set up the new security scheme, which is in line with international best practices of securing communities.
The chairman said the agency would work within the ambit of the law in the discharge of its duties. He commended Wike for the support rendered to security agencies across the state as well as the promulgation of stringent laws to check kidnapping and cultism.
Meanwhile, the Public Policy Research and Analysis Centre (PPRAC) has formally recognised Wike with the Zik Prize for Good Governance.
The PPRAC, organisers of the Zik Leadership Prize in Leadership, said Wike was honoured because of his accomplishments in projects delivery, prudent management of scarce resources, human capital development and policy implementation.
Presenting the Zik Prize to Wike, on Sunday at the Civic Centre, Victoria Island, Lagos, former Minister of Education and Chairman of Advisory Board of PPRAC, Prof Jubril Aminu, praised the governor for turning the state into a huge construction site.