A Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Femi Falana, has described the call by Nigeria's Senate President, Ahmed Lawan, for a national security summit as “escapist and diversionary.”
He expressed his displeasure with the call in a statement on Thursday.
Falana said, "Not too long ago, a former President regularly convened security meetings to address the security challenges facing the country when he was in power. But under his watch, the country witnessed the highest rate of politically motivated killings in the history of the country because the recommendations of the security summits were never implemented.
"On February 8, 2018, the Senate convened a well attended national security summit at Abuja. The executive branch of the Federal government participated at the summit. Incidentally, Senator Ahmed Lawan was the Chairman of the ad hoc committee set up by the senate to review the security situation in the country. The committee submitted a report with far-reaching recommendations. But apart from the enactment of the Police Security Fund, the other recommendations of the committee have not been implemented.
"Furthermore, on June 8, 2019, the executive convened a security summit attended by the President, Vice President, the 36 state governors and service chiefs to review the security situation in the country. The resolutions of the summit have not been implemented.”
Falana said instead of calling for the set up of another security summit, the senate should implement the resolutions of the senate and the recommendations of the executive on national security.
He added, "Notwithstanding that section 214 of the Constitution provides that there shall be one police force in Nigeria, the National Assembly enacted the Security and Civil Defence Corps Act in 2003 and thereby established another police force. In addition, the operatives of the graft agencies, customs, prisons, federal road safety corps etc have been authorized to bear arms by a Presidency that is opposed to State Police.
"Therefore, the National Assembly should end the official hypocrisy by ensuring that the Constitution is amended to allow each government to establish a state police service to secure the life and property of the Nigerian people.
"As a matter of urgency, the National Assembly should appropriate a Special Security Fund for the recruitment and training of police personnel without any further delay.
"In line with the provisions of the Constitution, the Nigeria Police Council (constituted by the President, state governors, Inspector-General of Police and Chairman of Police Service Commission) should meet on a regular basis to administer, organize and supervise the Nigeria Police Force.
"Pursuant to Section 14 of the constitution, the federal, state and local governments should be constituted in such a manner to reflect the diversity of the people. In particular, workers, women, youths and physically challenged are entitled to be included in the governments.
"Recently, the Federal Ministry of Finance announced that the sum of N605bn had been recovered from asset recovery and the whistle blowing policy of the federal government. In the same vein, the anti graft agencies, Federal Ministry of Justice and Presidential Panel on Public Property have announced the recovery of hundreds of billions of Naira. From the recovered loot the federal government should earmark the sum of N1 billion for job creation in each local government in the country.
"State governments should embark on the immediate prosecution of all armed robbery, murder and kidnap suspects that have been paraded by the police and other security agencies.
"In order to end the violent clashes between farmers and herders, state governments should speed up the establishment of ranches and abattoirs in various parts of the country."