Jonathan calls for setting up of anti terrorism agencies in EFCC, ICPC mould

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Ime Akpan

The former president, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan has called on the federal government to set up units in the same mould of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) to tackle kidnapping and terrorism-related issues in the country.

Jonathan stated this in Akure, Ondo State on Tuesday where he commiserated with a chieftain of Afenifere, Chief Reuben Fasoranti on the death of his daughter, Mrs. Funke Olakunri,

He said as president, he inherited insecurity but lamented that the problem was getting more disturbing by the day.

“I was there as a president for some time; security challenges were there with me. I also inherited some. But it is getting worse every day. And we cannot continue to use the same old method.

“As security operatives, the police, the SSS, the armed forces, we must deploy technology and I believe if the federal government will need to set up a special unit, just like we set up EFCC and ICPC to handle specific issues of corruption, they will know that their total responsibility is to manage this issue of kidnapping and terrorist attacks on people going on the road or going to the farm.

“We can’t continue that way; it is not just possible, because we can’t talk about managing the economy of this country if people are not safe. Economy is for the people, they must be alive to enjoy infrastructure. Even if you tar all the roads in the country and people cannot move around, then the roads become meaningless.”

The former president also acknowledged that insecurity in Nigeria is not a recent development saying it has graduated into a dangerous level.

“Every generation of human beings faces problems and that generation must find ways of solving that problem. Every government faces some unique problems.

“Insecurity has been with us immediately after the civil war. That was the first time we experienced armed robbery in Lagos. From armed robbery it graduated to kidnapping.

“The first major kidnapping I describe as commercial kidnapping because some money changed hands happened in 2006 when I was also a governor of Bayelsa State.

“From commercial kidnapping, it moved to terrorism in the North and now, some kind of terrorist attacks all over the country, where people just jump into the road and spray bullets on innocent people. That is terror attack. You have no reason to attack somebody you don’t even know; that is terrorism.

“It is now a major problem to the country and my belief is that the federal government working with the state government must design a different approach,” he said.

The former president also called on the government to revisit the 2014 National Conference report in which issues that bordered on security vis-à-vis state and regional police was discussed.

“A lot of things were discussed during the national conference organised during my time as president. The issue of security, state and community policing was discussed. I always believe that government should look at that report, it was not written by me.

“We should not play politics with serious national issues. If we look at that report, there are recommendations that border on security and if there is an area that needs to be expanded because I believe everyday new idea comes, it should be updated.

“There is nothing wrong holding a specific meeting to look at the issue of security. I believe the federal and state government having a new approach, deploying technology and having more money to protect our people,” he said.

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