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  • News - North Central - FCT
  • Updated: April 24, 2024

Egbetokun's call for merger of NSCDC, FRSC with police ill-motivated, inimical - Group

Egbetokun's call for merger of NSCDC, FRSC with police ill-m

A rights group, Save Nigeria Movement, SNM, has countered the call by the Inspector General of Police, IGP, Kayode Egbetokun, for the merger of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, and the Federal Road Safety Corps, FRSC,.

The SNM said such a move was inimical to national security, ill-motivated and ill-timed.

The IGP had on Monday at the National Dialogue on state policing organised by the House of Representatives in Abuja with the theme “Pathways to Peace: Reimagining Policing in Nigeria,” called for the merger of both agencies with the police to enhance effectiveness in providing security.

However, In a statement signed by the SNM convener, Rev. Solomon Semaka, yesterday, in Abuja, the group maintained that the Nigeria Police Force was in dire need of reforms, and this, should not contemplate any form of merger.

The statement reads: “We are duty bound to express our strong disapproval and outright rejection of the ill-motivated and ill-timed call for the merger of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) and the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC). 

“While it’ll be inimical to national security to merge those agencies, we are particularly alarmed by the very thought of merging the NSCDC with the Police and view this suggestion as an attempt to undermine the extraordinary work the NSCDC is doing.

“It is also strange that an already overwhelmed Nigerian Police Force (NPF) would be looking for more duties when it’s obvious she’s shirking her original responsibilities. Instead of focusing on reforming the rot in the NPF, the IGP chose rather to play to the gallery in a deliberate attempt to malign the NSCDC.

“It is rather disheartening that despite the clear position of the famous Orosanye Report which called for the strengthening of the NSCDC to enable it perform it’s mandate creditably, the IGP regrettably holds a contrary view. Is the IGP questioning the authority of the Oronsanye report that recommended for the strengthening of the NSCDC? Is he just playing on the intelligence of Nigerians who overwhelmingly welcomed the report and are looking forward to it’s full implementation?”

“The NSCDC has been over performing in recent times. Only few weeks ago, the NSCDC destroyed over 10 illegal refineries in the country. It has also deployed Mining Marshalls that have helped to curb illegal mining thereby increasing revenues. This is clearly in line with the Mr. President’s economic recovery plan and the need to meet Nigeria’s OPEC quota as well as the desire for Mr President to push up oil production to two million barrels per day.

“Nigerians and indeed the entire Civil Society community is unanimous in acknowledging the enormous contributions of the NSCDC in all aspects of national life. They have distinguished themselves in the area of counterterrorism, prevention of vandalism, combating crude oil theft in the Niger Delta region, providing and sharing intelligence towards resolving complex cases of kidnapping and ransom taking by breaching the logistics chain of kidnappers and bandits in country.. It is therefore unacceptable to us that such a suggestion is even contemplated at all.

“With the introduction of the Commandant General’s Special Intelligence Squad (DG’s SIS), high-tech surveillance of critical national assets, the NSCDC has pioneered modern techniques in surveillance and has collaborated and clearly complimented other security agencies in intelligence gathering and sharing to enhance national security. Asking for the merger of an agency with sterling track record is an unpopular thing that should not be entertained. It is our informed opinion that this merger proposal can’t help the country and should be discarded entirely and completely”, the statement added.

“We make bold to state that this clandestine move to usurp the mandate and modest vision of the NSCDC can not stand especially at a time like this when the nation is looking up to the NSCDC to scale up its interventions that have seen a sharp reduction in vandalism, crude oil theft and school abductions amongst other laudable achievements. 

“The NSCDC has clearly established itself as a credible security outfit in a class of it’s own with well spelt out duties and responsibilities. The NSCDC has come to stay and if any organisation feels challenged by their professional prowess, they should step up their game and perform better rather than becoming a stumbling block.

“It is imperative that the the NSCDC must remain an independent security entity. Infact, without the NSCDC, the Nigerian Police Force will clearly be overwhelmed as it is clearly not equipped to engage productively with civilians and gather intelligence like the NSCDC. The Nigerian Police Force should therefore seek to learn from the NSCDC towards improving their engagement with civilians and rather than seeking a merger which will not benefit the country.

“Our collective resolve is rather to call for the strengthening of the NSCDC by the federal government to carry out its mandate effectively and compliment the other security agencies in enhancing national security. More logistic facilities including the establishment and equipping of more Command and training Centers across all the Local governments that make up the country will go a long way in solidifying their presence and creating the necessary impact. This is more patroitic and productive than a merger.”

 

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