The Minister of Interior, Lt. Gen. Abdulrahman Dambazau has urged Police chiefs in West Africa to collaborate more in order to tackle transnational crimes within the sub-region.
Dambazau who said the fight against crime required collaborative efforts of countries and security agencies explained that transnational crimes cannot be won by a single country or a security agency.
Speaking in Abuja at the 16th Annual General Assembly of West African Police Chiefs Committee (WAPCCO), Dambazau attributed the proliferation of firearms in the region to the instability in Libya.
He said: “The proliferation of firearms is a big challenge in this sub-region particularly because of the flow of these firearms from unstable countries like Libya. After Gaddafi, Libya went into conflict and it is still in conflict and some of those weapons were trickling down through Mali, Niger and others.
“We are here because it is a regional issue. It is an issue that has to do either trans-border criminal activities, smuggling and terrorism. A country or a security agency cannot deal with these crimes on its own. This is the reason why we have come together as a region to assess the situation and deal with it accordingly.”
He also said there was need for collaboration and information sharing amongst security agencies in the region.
Police Chiefs in the sub-region have also asked the Economic Community of West African State (ECOWAS) to upgrade it to a directorate position.
The security chiefs under the aegis of WAPCCO lamented that its current structure has made it difficult for it to perform its roles optimally.
The Chairman of WAPCCO and the Inspector-General of Police, Ag. IGP Mohammed Adamu said constant meeting would avail the security chiefs opportunity to tackle proliferation of firearms, terrorism, kidnapping and other forms of crime within the region.
Adamu also noted that the inability of the Committee to meet in the last five years has restrained it from tackling some of the security challenges witnessed in the region.
On some of the challenges confronting the region, he said: “We are having security challenges in the whole of West African sub-region and there is need for Police chiefs and other heads of other security agencies to come together to see how we can bring down the level of crime within the sub-region.
“If you look at the 15 countries in the West African sub-region, you will see that they have one challenge or the other. We know that in Nigeria, we have challenges that involve kidnapping and we know that arms and ammunition are coming from outside the country but within the region. There is need to stop the influx of arms and ammunition within the country.”
On the porous nature of the borders, he said security agencies during the meeting will see how to fortify the borders in order to prevent infiltration by criminals.
On it being upgraded to directorate position, the IG said: “I respectfully submit without pre-empting your minds that it will not be difficult to come to the inevitable conclusion that the WAPCCO as currently situated within the border structure of ECOWAS is inhibiting the ability of the body to optimally attain its mandate.
“It is my humble suggestion that a review of the status of WAPCCO within the ECOWAS secretariat has become evidently necessary. Consequently, it is suggested that WAPCCO be upgraded to a Directorate in ECOWAS.
“This will guarantee the regularity of WAPCCO’s thereby enhancing the dynamism and effectiveness of the Committee.”
On whether the inability of the Committee to meet in the past five years had connection with some of the security challenges witnessed in the region, Adamu said: “The last edition of this meeting was held as far back as 2014. This gap has impacted on the ability of member countries to constantly and effectively review the security situation in the region and proffer solutions.
“I would not link lack of the meeting to the security challenges but if we have had the meetings, at least, we would have checkmated some of the challenges we are seeing.
“We would have organised joint operation to prevent them but now that we are meeting, we will make sure that we deal with the issues.”
NUC, NYSC to block ‘fake’ foreign-trained graduates from service
The National Universities Commission (NUC), in collaboration with the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), on Tuesday said it had put measures in place to block fake foreign-trained graduates from partaking in the compulsory one-year national service.
The NUC said it would continue to ensure the credibility of certificates issued by Nigerian universities and block fake foreign-trained graduates coming into the country.
Its Executive Secretary, Prof. Abubakar Rasheed, spoke when the NYSC Director General, Brig.-Gen. Shuaibu Ibrahim, visited him at the commission’s headquarters in Abuja, the nation’s capital.
A statement in Abuja by the NYSC Director of Press and Public Relations, Adenike Adeyemi, regretted the challenges in vetting the certificates obtained from universities established by Nigerians outside the country.
The NUC chief said many universities produce quality graduates while some produce graduates who cannot defend their certificates.
He said the commission had not approved the degrees of some online universities operating in the country.
Rasheed added that the commission had approached the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) to shut down some illegal universities operating in Nigeria.
“NUC and NYSC must work together to help the country in producing quality graduates. The NUC will continue to certify the credibility of certificates obtained from Nigerian universities,” he said.
The NYSC DG said the scheme will not issue Certificate of National Service to unqualified graduates.
Eid-el-kabir: FG declares Monday, Tuesday public holidays
The Federal Government has declared Monday 12th and Tuesday 13th August as Public Holidays to mark the 2019 Eid-Al-Kabir celebrations.
The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Interior, Barr. Georgina Ehuriah, who made the declaration on behalf of the Federal Government, congratulated the Muslim faithful on the occasion .
She called on all Nigerians, at home and in diaspora, to use the period of this year’s Eid-Al-Kabir celebration to embrace the virtues of love, humility, peace and sacrifice as exemplified by the Holy Prophet Mohammed.
She urged Nigerians to shun any form of disruptive tendencies and join hands with the Federal Government to build a peaceful, strong and united Nigeria so as to achieve an enviable Next Level of growth and development.
According to a statement by Director (Press & Public Relations), Mohammed Manga, the Permanent Secretary reaffirmed the determination of the President Muhammadu Buhari led-administration to protect the lives and properties of Nigerians, adding that Security Agencies under the Ministry have been directed to ensure the provision of adequate security, before, during and after the Eid-Al-Kabir celebrations.
She restated government’s desire for all Nigerians to live a life of sacrifice, charity and love for one another.
Bar. Ehuriah wished Nigerians a happy, peaceful and fulfilling Eid-Al-Kabir celebrations.
Why Buhari must act now, by comedian Ali Baba
Foremost Nigerian stand-up comedian and actor, Atunyota Alleluya Akpobome, widely known as Ali Baba recently charged President Muhammad Buhari and Nigerians to be futuristic in their dreams.
The ace comedian who took to his social media page said the present administration needs to be proactive in creating the future for the next generation.
“Buhari needs to act now. He must start creating the future, developing our infrastructures and prepare them for the next generation,” he posted.
“The Eiffel Tower was built in the 1800s. Today, that structure is the centre of the economy of Paris. The Pyramids built in the days of Moses, still feed Egypt. The Walls of China. The leaning Tower of Pissa. The Ruins of Rome… What structures do we have, to drive economic development and help trigger different dreams. Where can you see those iconic landmarks in Nigeria? How have their values been maximized? Visit our Museums. Yet we want the artefacts taken away, that are getting the best treatment, to be returned. Laughable.”
The 54 years old comedians, however described the present situation of the country as ‘hand to mouth,” “We live from hand to mouth. We sell the oil. Spend it. Drill for more oil. Spend it. And the fraction we even spend is small. The rest of the money stolen. We have been stolen blind. And the thieves are living large amongst us. And we can see them but can’t make them face the music.”
Ali Baba who after completing his academic degree in 1990, relocated to Lagos to develop his comedic talent said he still think about how people tried to discouraged him when he started doing stand-up comedy in 1988.
“In 1988, when I started doing standup comedy, there were many who told me that much. My father disowned me. His reason? He could not see any future in what I did. Many people are limited by history of things and what they already know. Those who create the future get triggered by things that can be seen in the future.
“I look back now and think about how many people tried to discourage me. Those who thought the ladder to success, was exclusively by climbing as a Doctor, Lawyer, Engineer, Banker, Architect, Accountant, Civil Servant… Today, there are comedians who are worth 3 billion (more or less) in assets and liquid cash. There are comedians, whose social impact and economic value has empowered many who are in those core walks of life mentioned above.”