National Conference Committee Rejects Idea Of State Police

National-conferenceAdvocates of state police in Nigeria may still have a lot of work to do, as two committees at the National Conference on Monday rejected the idea.

The issue failed to get the approval at the Committees on Devolution of Power and National Security.

The issue was debated with passion by proponents and opponents in the committees as they resume deliberation for the week.

It is just three days left for committees to complete their work and submit their recommendations, but some committees were still receiving presentation from resource people and agencies they had invited, such as the Nigeria communication commission and the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation.

The committee on devolution of power continued where they left off debating items that should be moved from the exclusive list of the constitution to the concurrent list.

It was difficult to reach a consensus on the item on mines and minerals including oil fields, oil mining geographical surveys and natural gas.

The issue was then put aside and the debate on the issue of the police came up.

In the committee on National Security, the sub-committee of police presenting its report rejected the creation of state police.

The sub-committee, however, recommended that the appointment of a Commissioner of Police should be in consultation with the state governor.

As time is no longer on their side, the committees are working to complete their assignment before Wednesday.

The insecurity situation in the north eastern part of Nigeria had led to the call for state police, which advocates believe would tackle the issue at the grassroots, as police officials would understand the community they would be policing better.

Those against the establishment of state police are afraid that the police could be abused by Nigerians, who may use them to fight political opponents.

Lawmakers From Borno Speak Out On Abducted School Girls

School-girls-abductedWe had barely wrapped our heads around last Monday’s bomb blast at a motor park in Nyanya Abuja when news filtered of the abduction of more than two hundred young girls in Chibok Borno state.

The abduction of such high number of young girls in a state under under emergency rule is baffling and what is worse days after the abduction these girls seem to have vanished into thin air.

The security crises in the country have thrown up concerns of human rights violation by security agents and the Boko Haram sect.

Besides human rights violations, the crises have made many refugees in their own country.

The Chairman House Committee on Human Rights Beni Lar, said that the government has the duty of protecting the citizens of the country.

“We have had series of attacks in Nigeria that have claimed lives. Every citizens of the world under the United Nations convention has the right to life, the very basic fundamental right and the Chapter four of the Nigerian constitution gives every Nigerian the right to life,” she said.

She also spoke on how internally displaced persons can seek redress for abuse of their rights.

Away from the security crises in the country, the Federal Government, few weeks back, released the white paper on the report of the presidential committee on restructuring and rationalisation of federal government parastatals, commissions and agencies.

Although the Federal Government rejected some of the recommendations in the Steve Oronsaye report it accepted the recommendations of merging the Nigeria airways management authority (NAMA), Nigeria civil aviation authority (NCAA) and the Nigeria meteorological agency (NIMET)

The Gavel sat down with the Chairman Senate Committee on Aviation Senator, Hope Uzodinma, to get his thoughts on this recommendation.

He said that going by the requirements of various conventions Nigeria had entered into, it would not be possible to merge the regulator and the operator, insisting that the practice internationally is that both agencies would remain autonomous. “That is what is obtainable in all countries. Aviation is regulated globally going by the various conventions and agreements,” he said, explaining that the attainment of CAT1 status came with a condition that Nigeria must have a regulatory body and that there must be legislation.

Jonathan Asks Nigerians To Shun Religious Differences

Goodluck-Jonathan-prayingPresident Goodluck Jonathan has once more called on Nigerians to shun religious differences and join his administration in the fight against insurgency and constant attacks by the Boko Haram.

At the 2014 Presidential National Prayer and Breakfast programme held at the Presidential Villa on Saturday, President Jonathan also asked all Nigerians to pray for the souls of those that had been killed in various attacks in Nigeria and their families, promising that all those who took part in the attacks “will surely pay” for it.

It was the 4th session of the prayer and breakfast meeting that is usually held after the Lent period and the Easter celebration. It brings together Nigerian Christians from all denominations with the aim of praying for the country, expressing their faith in God.

“No matter the situation and circumstances, our faith is built on solid ground,” is the hope that they profess.

The only lesson of the day, taken from the book of Luke 13, was read by the first lady, Mrs patience Jonathan.

There were prayers for the nation, the President and other leaders and for all those who lost their lives in all the attacks of the Boko Haram sect.

The prayer was that God would look down from heaven and intervene in the affairs of the nation.

Call For Increased Vigilance

Prayers were also said for the forgiveness of sins, especially for a change of heart by those behind the terror attacks in the land.

Even visitors recognised the fact that Nigeria needed peace now more than ever before.

The Director of the National Institute of Transformation, Professor Vincent Anigbogu, came with very inspiring words for the President and concerned Nigerians.

President Goodluck Jonathan prayed for the repose of the souls of the departed, promising that all those who take part in the attacks that had claimed the lives of innocent citizens must pay for it.

He thanked Nigerians for standing for justice and called for divine wisdom and increased vigilance, reassuring  Nigerians that “no criminal enemies would derail the vision to transform Nigeria and bring it at per or even better than most developed nations”.

President Jonathan urged Nigerians not to relent in their support for his administration, emphasising that it has given him the courage to work for the good of all.

He also pointed out that “the quest for peace, development and justice must be achieved from a common front regardless of one’s religion and ethnic background”.

Jonathan Commends Buhari For Patriotic Statement On Terrorism

buhari_jonathanPresident Goodluck Jonathan on Wednesday commended General Muhammadu Buhari for his views on terrorism and insecurity in Nigeria, describing it as that of a true patriot, respected former Head of State, revered elder statesman and nationalist.

General Buhari had in an article published by the media over the past two days, called on Nigerians to remain steadfast and work in unity to overcome terrorists and other merchants of death currently threatening national security.

In a statement by the spokesman for the President, Reuben Abati, President Jonathan welcomed General Buhari’s call, emphasising that a minority must never be allowed to “bring the nation to its knees through terror”.

President Jonathan also said that the he had noted General Buhari’s recommendation that the nation’s counter-terrorism strategies be further fine-tuned and welcomed his kind offer of support and co-operation in dealing with the challenge of terrorism. 

The President assured General Buhari of his Administration’s sincere commitment and dedication to the successful prosecution of the fight against terrorism and all other threats to national security.

He further assured the General of his preparedness to work with him and all other patriotic Nigerians, irrespective of their political affiliations, to strengthen national security and end the scourge of terrorism.

General Buhari is a leader of the All Progressives Congress, an opposition party.