Politics Hinders Security Agencies From Doing Their Jobs, Says Ex-DSS Director

 

A former Deputy Director, Department of State Services, Dennis Amachree, has identified politics as a factor hindering security agencies from effectively performing their jobs.

Nigeria currently faces myriads of security challenges with banditry activities in the northwest, terrorism in the North-East, militancy in the South-South, IPOB activities in the southeast, calls for secession in the South-West among others.

Although some successes have been recorded in the fight against insecurity across the country, Amachree believes more can be achieved if politics does not hinder security personnel in carrying out their constitutional duties.

READ ALSO: Gunmen Free 93 Islamiyya Students Three Months After Abduction

“One thing I know is that the intelligence community is solid in this country but what impedes them in carrying out some of the jobs they want to do is politics, politicians because when you mix with politics security, then it becomes a big problem,” he said.

“If these agencies are independent on their own, they should be able to do a better job but when they are under the direction of leaders that are not forthcoming or who don’t think seriously about the whole country, then we have a problem.”

Arrested But Not Prosecuted?

Amachree, an intelligence officer, said the whole country is under siege.

Citing kidnappings and attacks that regularly occur, he noted that Nigeria needs to solve what he described as some fundamental problems.

One of such, he stated, was divisiveness among the citizens, with another being unpatriotic acts exhibited by Nigerians.

A former Deputy Director, Department of State Services, Dennis Amachree speaks during an interview on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily on August 27, 2021.

 

According to Amachree, a recent survey carried out in the country indicated that only 37 percent of Nigerians are patriotic, a situation he said isn’t good enough.

He lamented that though some arrests have been made by security agencies, some of the suspects are not being prosecuted.

“When we start to have these different kinds of attitudes of where we came from or whether the herdsmen, bandits are from outside the country or they are unknown gunmen, it is something that we have to put a finger on.

“When these kinds of things happen, people are arrested, nobody is prosecuted or if they are prosecuted, nobody is jailed. Then it becomes a problem whereby we keep on calling names or apportioning blames in the country,” he said.

Sunday Igboho Should Have Joined Amotekun – Ex-DSS Official

 

Popular Yoruba rights activist, Sunday Adeyemo, aka Sunday Igboho, should have joined the South-West Security Network Agency, also known as Amotekun corps.

A former Assistant Director with the Department of State Services (DSS), Dennis Amachree, stated this on Friday during an interview on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily.

“The action of the DSS is preemptive and it is also a warning to all those who have been stockpiling arms in different parts of the country,” he said in reaction to a raid carried out by DSS operatives on Igboho’s house in Ibadan on Thursday.

“We have Amotekun. Why is Sunday not operating with Amotekun? This is a question that should be asked but he is operating a separate thing different from Amotekun and of course, having all kinds of weapons.

“With all those loaded magazines, that means he is ready for war and I don’t think that is the way to go. If people are going for self-determination, there are peaceful ways of going about it.”

Amachree’s remarks come a day after the secret service said a team of joint security operatives apprehended 13 of his armed men.

A file photo of former DSS Director, Dennis Amachree

 

DSS spokesman, Peter Afunaya had during a press conference in Abuja said the raid was based on intelligence that Igboho was stockpiling arms to cause chaos within the region.

READ ALSO: Igboho’s Men Engaged Us In Gun Battle, Says DSS

He noted that nine of Igboho’s boys attacked security operatives, adding that they were overpowered, leading to the death of two persons.

The secret service explained the long arm of the law will still reach Igboho, urging the agitator to turn himself in or be tracked down.

“He might have attacked security operatives as his strength carried him. But this will be the end of his shenanigans. Soon, he will not have a hiding place. His strength will sure fail him,” Afunaya added.

Some of the men suspected to be Igboho’s guards paraded by the DSS in Abuja on July 1, 2021.

 

Igboho rose to prominence earlier in the year after he issued a quit notice to herders in Oyo State accused of crimes.

The raid comes less than a week after the arrest of prominent pro-Biafran independence leader Nnamdi Kanu.

The leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) group, which supports the secession of the south-east of Nigeria, Kanu was arrested abroad after four years on the run and brought to Nigeria, where he will go on trial for “terrorism” this month.

Nigerian Police Were Informed About Imo Jailbreak Thrice – Ex-DSS Official

 

A former Assistant Director at the Department of State Services, Dennis Amachree on Thursday said the police were warned thrice before gunmen attacked a correctional facility and police headquarters facility in Imo State.

Mr. Amachree made the comment during his appearance on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily.

The attack, which took place on Monday, has been followed by another assault on a police facility in Imo State.

READ ALSO: Two Officers Injured, One Missing As Gunmen Attack Another Police Facility In Imo

Imo State Governor Hope Uzodinma has blamed the recent attacks on security facilities in the state on aggrieved politicians who aim to destabilise his government and that of President Muhammadu Buhari.

But Mr. Amachree suggested on Thursday that such attacks, especially the Monday event, could have been averted if the police were on their toes.

“There is enough actionable intelligence; actionable in the sense that it allows for space for people to execute it,” he said.

“One week ahead of this particular event and 72 hours before the event and 48 hours before the event – so three times – the Nigeria police was informed that this was going to happen.

“Some suspects that were being geolocated around the area were found surveilling the prisons and the police headquarters.

“But you know, in our lackadaisical way, when the intelligence would come, they throw it by the side, and then of course when something happens, everybody runs around.”

Mr. Amachree said the DSS could not have acted on its own intelligence because it is not “a fighting force.”

“The actionable party is actually the police,” he said. “Because when they say a particular installation or facility is under threat, then the actionable party would go ahead to correct it.

“The DSS is not a fighting force. They have a protective department that is basically responsible for the security of persons, VIPS. But when it comes to fighting, they always liaise with sister agencies, either the police or the military.”

He stressed that “some people are just lazy to do their jobs” and advised that other states should learn from Lagos State.

“Lagos, the same intelligence has been coming around and of course they have been proactive.

“If it is happening in the North-East, it could happen in Lagos. (But) Lagos itself has taken proactive steps, especially when it comes to securing correctional facilities in the state. And I think that’s what other states should follow now because they can’t sit back and wait until it happens to them.”

Insecurity: FG’s Silence Is Not Palatable, Says Former Assistant DSS Director

PHOTO USED TO ILLUSTRATE THE STORY: A file photo of a gun seized from crime suspects in Nigeria.

 

Former Assistant Director at the State Security Service (SSS), Dennis Amachree, has called on the Federal Government to address the current security challenges in different parts of the country.

Amachree in an interview on Channels Television breakfast programme said the country is currently in a ‘tight place’ as regards security and the presidency needs to speak up and address the situation.

He also reacted to the statement by Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom who on Wednesday accused the Federal Government of bias by keeping quiet concerning the herders-farmers crisis recently rocking some parts of the country.

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“I will agree with the governor because the security problems need to be addressed. The silence is not too palatable. It will be like two people are fighting and the umpire is being biased against one. I feel this has to be addressed.

“If you look at it holistically you will find out that we have two problems here. Firstly is the structure because everybody is talking about regions. So we have structure as a problem.

“The second one is the proliferation of small arms and light weapons. So we will have to address it. I will advise the government that they address the problem along that line,” Amachree said.

The security expert also advised that regions across the country be given autonomy for proper tracking down of crime and criminality.

“The people are agitating for regionalism, then give the region’s autonomy, that does not mean that we are breaking up Nigeria.

“If the regions have the autonomy then they all can handle their problems where they are. Right now, there are too many pointing of fingers whenever something happens and you can no longer continue to do that.”

Governor Ortom had earlier on Tuesday pointed accusing fingers at the Federal Government claiming the government has failed to secure the country by being bias in handling cases of attacks allegedly carried out by armed herdsmen.

“This country belongs to all of us and the Federal Government, the presidency must act fast because time is going. From North-West, North-East, North-Central, South-West, South-East, South-South there is general insecurity and this is being propelled by herdsmen,” Ortom said on Wednesday.

 

– Ishaku On Licenced Guns? –

In an effort to tackle insecurity in the country, Taraba State Governor, Darius Ishaku on Wednesday asked the Federal government to allow Nigerians carry licenced guns to defend themselves amid the myriads of security challenges facing the country.

Ishaku stated this on Tuesday when 15 local government chairmen of the state paid him a condolence visit after the burial of one of them who was kidnapped and subsequently killed by gunmen.

He lamented the worsening state of insecurity, adding that the situation has gone to its lowest ebb and demands reawakening.

Govt Cannot Continue To Relegate Police And Expect Maximum Production – Amachree

 

A former Assistant Director of the Department of State Services (DSS), Dennis Amachree, says the Nigerian government cannot continue to relegate the Nigeria Police Force and expect maximum performance.

Mr. Amachree who was a guest on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily said the morale of the policemen is low because they are not well taken care of.

“A police officer who has to buy his uniform becomes a problem when he gets into the street,” Amachree stated.

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According to the former chairman of the American Society for Industrial Security (ASIS International), Nigeria Chapter, the police have been neglected for too long.

With about 400,000 policemen saddled with the responsibility of enforcing the law and ensuring the safety, health, and possessions of about 200 million citizens, the country is under-policed.

Amachree was of the opinion that the manpower of the police should be increased. He also inferred that policing must be brought down to the grassroots where citizens can adequately participate to lessen the burden police officers are left to shoulder alone.

Killings: Now Is The Time To Create A Security Architecture, Says Ex-DSS Boss 

A former Assistant Director of the Department of State Services (DSS), Dennis Amachree, says now is the right time for the nation’s security challenges to be fixed.

Amachree, who was a guest on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily on Monday, regretted that insecurity has claimed ‘somebody of significance,’ and called on the Federal Government to urgently address the incessant killings in various parts of the country.

“We are not facing the security problem headlong and I think we should do it now that it has happened to somebody of significant. And of course, this is not kidnapping, this is an assassination that has just taken place looking at all the aspects that have happened in the crime scene.

“It is an assassination and when people start to assassinate, then we are moving into a different chapter of the whole security problem. I can understand kidnapping because they need money.

READ ALSO: Olakunrin’s Murder: FG To Deploy Troops On Highways, Says Osinbajo

“This thing is happening because we are not addressing the problems. We usually do symptoms; the Vice President was there, and he said maybe they will put soldiers there,” he said.

Speaking further, the former DSS boss added that police personnel in charge of the nation’s internal security should be alive to their responsibilities.

Amachree wants the Federal Government to train police officers rather than deploying troops to highways.

His comment follows the death of Mrs Funke Olakunrin, a daughter of Afenifere National Leader, Reuben Fasoranti.

Olakunrin was shot dead while she was traveling along the Benin-Ore Expressway at about 2:00 pm on Friday, last week.

‘Illegal Mining’ Responsible For Zamfara Killings – Ex-DSS Asst Director

 

A former Assistant Director of the Department of State Services (DSS), Mr Dennis Amachree, has attributed the major cause of killings in Zamfara State to illegal mining of mineral resources.

He made the disclosure on Thursday during his appearance on Channel Television breakfast show, Sunrise Daily.

“Many people don’t know; what we see is fighting, killing, and all the rest,” he said, adding, “But the undermining issue there is the illegal mining – illegal mining of minerals.”

The security expert decried the rate of illegal mining in the state, saying this resulted in the emergence of cartels in the area.

He said the disagreements between the cartels were taking a toll on the state, resulting in the death of innocent people.

READ ALSO: Suspected Bandits Kill 17 In Fresh Zamfara Attack

Amachree stated, “It think we have a serious problem in Zamfara and I think it’s basically a lack of governance. There are cartels there and most of the fighting you see there are fights between different cartels.”

“I can tell you, the kind of money that is coming out of the illegal mining is more than what oil is giving us today.”

 

Mr Dennis Amachree speaks during his appearance on Sunrise Daily on December 27, 2018.

 

The former DSS assistant director regretted that despite the security reports forwarded to government authorities in the state by intelligence agencies, the situation was worsening.

According to him, the present issue of illegal mining in the state is escalating and it involves a lot of people, including some foreigners.

The security expert described the situation as “a big market” in which natural resources such as gold and diamond were carted out of the country illegally.

On the way forward, he backed the appointment of a military administrator to stop the killings in Zamfara and restore lasting peace in the state.

“I have personal experiences where minerals are being carted out of this country without any control,” Amachree said.

“If there is a state of emergency where a military administrator will be appointed, I think they could bring things under control because I’m telling you, this situation is really very bad.”

Scores of people – including residents, bandits, and security officials – have lost their lives this year as a result of the activities of the criminal elements.

One of the most recent is the attack by suspected bandits which claimed 17 lives at Magami Village in Maradun Local Government Area of the state.