Rights group, Human Rights Writers Association Of Nigeria (HURIWA), has again called on President, Mr. Bola Ahmed Tinubu, to compel the acting Inspector-General of Police Mr. Kayode Egbetokun, to personally undertake the swift rescue of the eight corps members kidnapped by terrorists in Zamfara State on their way to the camp two weeks ago….CONTINUE READING....CONTINUE READING
HURIWA once more reminds the Nigerian State that the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) is a symbol of the nation’s unity and any atrack on members of the NYSC posted to serve in any part of the Country, must be categorise as a crime that falls under the priority list. HURIWA said the management of the NYSC has done all that it can to guarantee the security of the corpers but the Rights group said the bulk of responsibility to protect the corpers lie squarely in the hands of, first and foremost, the IGP.
The Rights group lamented that over several years, heads of security services have escaped the big hammer from the appointing authority even when evidence abound of a clear dereliction of duty by these officers. This failure of supervision on the part of the appointing authority has inflicted a regime of gross indiscipline and failure of professional ethics on the part of the heads of the security agencies in the Country.
National Coordinator of HURIWA, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko affirmed that the Nigeria Police has all the regulatory frameworks that oblige them to effectively rescue these youngsters taken away by terrorists for over two weeks just as the Rights group said a perusal of all the statutory provisions that capture the duties of the NPF have strengthened the police to carry out her security duties just as the Rights group said the IGP has failed to carry out his legal duties by failing to clinically rescue the 8 National Youth Service Corps members. “We expect that the IGP should lead from the front and not to become accustomed to his cosy and heavily air-conditioned office in the nation’s Capital whilst 8 Corpers are languishing amidst pain and pangs with hardened terrorists inside the forests of Zamfara State.”
HURIWA recalled that suspected bandits had kidnapped eight National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) members along a highway in Zamfara State two weeks ago.
It was gathered that the victims were kidnapped penultimate Saturday while traveling from Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, to Sokoto en route to Zamfara State.
They were to take part in the mandatory national service when the bandits intercepted their vehicle. According to reports 11 corps members were kidnapped but three managed to escape. Aside from the eight corps members, the driver of the bus was also abducted. Also, it is gathered that the family of one of the victims Betty Udofia was reached and that the kidnappers are demanding N4 million ransom.
HURIWA recalled vividly that cursory perusal of the 2020 Nigerian Police Act reveals that the scope of the Force operations has been broadened to facilitate the achievement of its general objective which is to provide an effective police service that complies with the principles of accountability, transparency, protection of human rights and freedom.
HURIWA added also that the Police Act in Section 4, is replete with extensive functions of the Force, notably, imposing an obligation on the police to protect the rights and freedom of every Nigerian in accordance with the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights, and other applicable laws.An interesting initiative of the Act is the recognition of private detectives and investigators. Section 4(a)(i) of the Act provides that the Force is responsible for vetting and approving the registration of Private Detective Schools and Private Investigative Outfits.
HURIWA stated that there is no gainsaying the fact as painted vividly by law scholars that this is a novel provision which raises a lot of optimism for crime detection and investigation in Nigeria. Private detectives are generally afforded more time and flexibility to investigate a wide range of matters and this is certainly welcome in light of several daily reports of crime. It also underlines the collaboration between the government and private security outfits in ensuring peace and order.A controversial provision of the Act which has sparked more than whispers of trepidation, especially amongst the Nigerian youths is Section 38(1)(a). The provision states that a police officer may without an order of court or warrant, arrest a suspect whom he suspects on reasonable grounds of having committed an offence (unless the law creating the offence prohibits any arrest without a court order). While the good intention of this provision is somewhat visible, it is hard to reconcile this with the reality of many victims of police brutality where they are unjustly profiled by the police as criminals and arrested immediately. There is a reasonable fear that this provision will give police officers the legal backing to perpetuate wanton arrests.”
HURIWA also criticised the minister of defence for saying that Nigeria needs prayers to be able to checkmate the heightened state of insecurity all around the Country even as the Rights group said the statement is a manifestation of crass incompetence and a clear justification of widespread criticisms that trailed the selection of ministers recently by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu for which many analysts say most of the cabinet level appointees are simply round pegs in square holes.
HURIWA recalled that Mr Mohammed Badaru, the Minister of Defence, had urged Nigerians to continue praying for an end to the security challenges tearing the country apart. He made the appeal on Thursday in Abuja while receiving a delegation from Jigawa State government. The delegation was led by the executive governor of Jigawa State, Mr Umar Namadi.
Badaru said that with the complex nature of the security challenges and other aspects of national development, “one could only ask for prayers to succeed”.
HURIWA cited a report whereby the defence minister while expressing strong hope in combating the security challenges, called for the support and prayers of all Nigerians, in order to entrench peace and stability in the country.
HURIWA however carpeted the Defence minister for his pedestrian approach to the fight against terrorism and ways and means of defeating the agents of instability and insecurity in the country just as HURIWA thinks the minister could have asked the civilian population of Nigerians to be vigilant and become active citizens in such a way that if they see something, they should say something and then the Nigerian government will act swiftly to eradicate those who threatened the security of Nigeria.
HURIWA argued persuasively that the duty of government officials is to appropriately enlighten the citizenry on their responsibility towards achieving a stable and secure nation and not for a minister who supervises such a strategic ministry as that of Defence to be telling his people buffeted by terrorist attacks, to continue praying. ‘Much more than prayers, Nigeria needs strong soldiers and a hierarchy that operates on zero tolerance to procurement corruption and insider sabotage, a civil society that partners constructively with the security community to volunteer information that constitutes hard core intelligence to be able to destroy terrorists….CONTINUE READING