The Head of Media, office of the Senior Special Assistant to the President, Public Affairs Department in the Presidency, Bamidele Salam, on Thursday said the Federal Government’s new security architecture will ensure better security for the citizens in 2014.
Speaking on Sunrise Daily, he stated that the containment of Boko Haram insurgency will continue in the new year as in the 2014 budget, which is currently before the National Assembly for approval, “there is adequate provision of a sum of 700 billion naira on security which is meant to equip the security agencies and make them more proactive in detecting most of these crimes before they are hatched.”
He added that the “Government is also very committed to strengthening the new security architecture which the FG has developed to make our security agencies more proactive, provide better equipment for the security agencies and also involve the communities in partnership with the security agencies.”
“I’m very certain that the security situation as it has to do with the battle against insurgency will be vigorously pursed (like Mr President said in his new year message) while other cases of insecurity like the occasional attacks in Jos as well as incidents of kidnapping in the South East of the country, will be effectively tackled with the new security architecture the Federal government developed in the out-gone year.”
As if the Federal Government’s plan also carters for the Police Force, Mr Salam said although there was no significant drop in terms of insecurity incidents as presented by the Police Force in 2013, the force is also proactive in its mandate. “The authority of the Nigeria Police is also being more proactive than it had ever been.” Salam also mentioned an indication of the pro-activity which was the IGP’s presentation of his scorecard last year.
He further stated that the “New Security Architecture is not restricted to the military and the DSS” as the police is “more fundamental.” He also expressed hope that the culture of accountability will be replicated by other top police officers in the hierarchy.
Speaking on the Lagos-Ibadan expressway, he praised the Goodluck Jonathan administration for breaking a 35 year long jinx by commissioning the 106 km long road for expansion, remodeling and reconstruction in 2013.
He stressed that the Lagos-Ibadan expressway was constructed between 1974 and 1978 but between 1978 and 2013, “there was no major action carried out on that road” until the Jonathan’s administration broke the jinx by commissioning the road to contractors, Julius Berger and RCC.
He addressed concerns regarding a huge sum of 167 billion naira budgeted for the construction of works on the road. “The Federal Government under President Goodluck Jonathan doesn’t embark on any project without following the due processes.” He also noted that the quality of work to be done on the road will justify the amount spent as additions, such as a flyover (to be constructed at the interchange close to the Redeem Camp), re-construction of bridges and extra lanes are also part of the construction work.
“There is an arrangement with the Nigeria Infrastructural Bank, so that we will not have the usual delays you have occasioned by bureaucracy, lack of enough budgetary provisions and other technical problems.” He added that the timeline set for the project, 48 months, will surely be met.
He also stated that since the funding of the project is “not strictly tied to the budget” citizens should expect to pay tolls upon its completion.
“The amount spent on the road will eventually be justified by the quality of the road that will be delivered to Nigerians,” he added.