A majority of the personnel of the Nigeria Police Force are not engaged in police duty, despite the shortage of manpower in the force.
This is the position of Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State who is worried about the rate of insecurity in the country.
Speaking during his appearance on Channels Television’s Politics Today on Monday, the governor insisted that decentralising the police was the way to go for Nigeria.
“We have always made a very strong argument that one centralised police in a federation does not work; Nigeria is the only country in the world that is a federation that has only one police force.
“We have made the argument that states should be allowed to have their own police and even the local governments should be allowed to have community policing,” Governor El-Rufai stated.
He added, “The number of policemen we have in Nigeria is inadequate, it is less than half of what we need and a large percentage of them are engaged in non-police duties like carrying handbags of the wives of important people.
“We need to have a greater footprint of police in Nigeria and the only way to achieve that in a fast track manner is to amend the Constitution and put policing on the concurrent list as recommended by the APC True Federalism Committee so that we have more policemen.”
Governors Are Frustrated
The governor decried that it was only in Nigeria among other countries in the world where a federation has only one police force.
He said the running cost of the police, including the provision of funds for vehicles, fuel, and communication, among others was the responsibility of the state governments.
Governor El-Rufai also condemned the situation in which governors have very limited or no control over the affairs of the police in their states.
He said, “I am frustrated in my state, many governors are frustrated in their states; we are called chief security officers only in name, we have no control over cohesive instruments of the state.
“We are almost helpless. The #EndSARS protest clearly showed the limit to the control of governors over the police and the military.”
Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, is unhappy with the security challenges in the country and dissatisfied with the roles of the state governors, as provided for in the Nigerian Constitution.
Governor El-Rufai, who is in Dubai, suggested the way to go to ensure the nation surmounts its various security challenges such as insurgency, banditry, and kidnapping among others during an interview with Channels Television on Monday.
He stressed that the recent #EndSARS protest by youths against police brutality in parts of the country has exposed the inability of the governors despite being called the Chief Security Officers of their states.
“We are all frustrated. I am frustrated in my state, many governors are frustrated in their states; we are called chief security officers only in name, we have no control over cohesive instruments of the state,” the governor said on Politics Today.
He added, “We are almost helpless. The #EndSARS protest clearly showed the limit to the control of governors over the police and the military.
“Some of us have more influence than others, but to a large extent, you ask the commissioner of police to do something and he has to clear with the Inspector-General of Police; this is the reality.
“We are not in control of the police, I don’t determine who gets posted to my state as CP and if I give him directives, he can decide to flout the directives. So, we are all frustrated.”
Amend The Constitution
Governor El-Rufai believes decentralising the police force will go a long way in addressing the security problems bedevilling the nation.
According to him, Nigeria is the only country in the world that is a federation that has only one police force.
The governor stated that the governors had engaged in arguments that states should be allowed to have their own police, while local governments should be allowed to have community police.
He noted that most state governments were responsible for the running cost of the police such as vehicles, fuel, communication, while the Federal Government was only responsible for the payment of the salaries of policemen.
Governor El-Rufal, therefore, stressed the need to recruit more personnel into the police force and ensure they were rightly deployed into designated areas of duty.
“The number of policemen we have in Nigeria is inadequate, it is less than half of what we need and a large percentage of them are engaged in non-police duties like carrying handbags of the wives of important people.
“We need to have a greater footprint of police in Nigeria and the only way to achieve that in a fast track manner is to amend the Constitution and put policing on the concurrent list, as recommended by the APC True Federalism Committee so that we have more policemen.”
The meeting had in attendance, the deputy Governor, Hadiza Balarabe, the Minister of Environment, Mohammed Mahmoud and other government officials.
The governor also condemned the recent attack of policemen and police barracks in some parts of the country during the #EndSARS protest which led to the death of some officers.
While admitting that there are some bad officers in the Force that should be fished out, El-Rufai warned on the dangers of attacking officers or tagging the entire force as bad because of the misconduct of a few personnel.
He, however, stressed the need as citizens and leaders to come together and help the police to perform better in securing the lives and property of the people.
Suspected Looters Arrested
The Kaduna State Police Command has arrested 93 suspected looters and vandals of public and private property in various parts of the state capital.
Some people hiding under the #EndSARS protest, had last weekend invaded some government warehouses, including the office of the National Agency for Food Drug Administration and other private property and carted away COVID-19 palliatives, seized fake and expired drugs, and other items.
Briefing journalists on the security situation in the state, the Commissioner of Police, Umar Muri explained that the arrested suspects were responsible for the unprecedented vandalization and theft of public and private properties across the state.
He said that the police also recovered several looted items including bags of grains, expired drugs, mattresses, bundles of zinc, computers, air conditioners, water testing machines and many others, all looted from the NAFDAC office, private and public warehouses as well as private homes.
According to the commissioner, the command in collaboration with other sister security agencies has so far dealt decisively with all acts of lawlessness in the state, adding that all the suspects will be charged to court.
At least seven people have been killed and several others injured when gunmen attacked Kidandan and Kadai communities in Giwa Local Government Area of Kaduna State.
Channels Television learned that the gunmen invaded the communities on Saturday night, opened fire on the residents and burnt down houses.
The Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs, Samuel Aruwan, confirmed the attack.
In a statement he signed, the commissioner said the attackers were fleeing bandits who were successfully repelled by security operatives and local vigilantes on Friday when they attempted to attack the Kidandan general area from a neighbouring state.
According to the Commissioner, the bandits regrouped in the said neighbouring state and advanced to the community after losing a number of their members to the superior firepower of the security operatives.
He explained that it was while escaping from the superior firepower that some of the fleeing bandits carried out a reprisal attack on Kadai village, leading to loss of lives, and razing of houses, motorcycles and vehicles in the villages.
Aruwan, however, said that security operatives and local vigilante neutralized an unspecified number of the bandits, while many escaped with varying degrees of bullet wounds.
Ground troops and police were mobilized while the Nigerian Air Force deployed a fighter jet to the general area for an immediate offensive against the horde of bandits.
Meanwhile, the state Governor, Nasir El-Rufai has condoled with the people of Kadai and Kidandan communities over the unfortunate incident.
The governor, in a message of condolence, prayed for the repose of the souls of those who lost their lives and also wished those that were injured a speedy recovery.
The Governor praised all security personnel and volunteers involved in the operation, describing their effort as a gallant act of sacrifice and deep patriotism in view of the steadfastness exhibited by the operatives and local vigilante.
He also appealed to the security agencies to sustain the ongoing onslaught against armed bandits and other criminals engaged in nefarious activities, stating that the ongoing operation will continue, as well as the deployment of troops and operatives to flashpoints in the counter banditry campaign.
The Kaduna State Government has released the sum of N1.6 billion for the payment of pensions, gratuities and death benefits to retired civil servants,
This was disclosed in a statement issued on Saturday by the Executive Secretary of the State Pension Bureau, Salamatu Isa.
She explained that the bureau has commenced physical verification of pensioners, which she notes is necessary to ensure that only genuine pensioners are paid.
According to Isa, the move is to ensure that pensioners supplied complete information, including correct account numbers and Bank Verification Number.
“We commenced payment of gratuities and death benefits on the 15th of September 2020 for batch 10. The state government released the sum of 1.6 billion naira, and we will pay pensioners from the State and 23 Local Governments that have been scheduled in the batch that is ready for payment.
“We want pensioners and next of kin of those who died to come over for physical verification. We also want to use exercise to collect complete information from the beneficiaries because some of them did not give complete information to the Bureau when they retired,” she said.
While noting that the bureau is currently paying the 10th batch of retired civil servants who have undergone verification, she lamented that there are people in batch 1-9 whose banks were unable to pay because they supplied incorrect account numbers and BVN.
She said that the bureau will ensure that all necessary information is supplied before names are forwarded to the banks to prevent a situation whereby pensioners have issues with their banks.
The Executive Secretary of the Pension Bureau asked civil servants who have retired from the state to come to the bureau with all relevant documents and information required.
She revealed that current administration inherited huge backlog of unpaid retirement and death benefits running into several billions of naira which previous governments failed to clear, saying it is impossible for any government to clear such amount in one swoop.
She commended the current administration for regular release of funds to clear the liabilities in batches.
Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, has reiterated the commitment of the state government in ensuring that the selection process for the new Emir of Zazzau is carefully done.
The governor disclosed this in a statement issued on Friday by his spokesman, Muyiwa Adekeye.
While quoting the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Balarabe Abbas, the procedure is for the kingmakers of Zazzau Emirate to address their recommendations to the Commissioner of Local Government Affairs, who will in turn process the document and forward to the Governor.
“Upon receipt of the correspondence from the commissioner, the SSG will avail the security agencies of the names on the shortlist for the necessary checks,” Adekeye said.
“It is the duty of the SSG to forward the recommendations and the associated security report to the Governor for his consideration.”
The governor’s spokesman confirmed that the report of the kingmakers has been submitted, adding that it is a step that will trigger the next sequence of events in the chain of reporting and security vetting.’
According to Adekeye, the SSG appealed for calm and understanding as the responsible institutions manage a selection process that was last used 45 years ago.
The former Emir of Zazzau, Alhaji Shehu Idris died on September 20 at the 44 Nigerian Army Reference Hospital in the Kaduna state capital after a brief illness.
He was 84 years and was buried the next day in the state.
Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State has signed into law the amended penal code 2020 which prescribes surgical castration for a rapist upon conviction.
The development was disclosed in a statement on Wednesday by the governor’s spokesman, Muyiwa Adekeye, after the amended law was passed by the Kaduna State House of Assembly last week.
The state House of Assembly noted that “with the new law, anyone convicted of rape will have his organ surgically removed so that even upon completion of his jail term, he will not be able to commit the crime again.
It added that “in addition to the castration of the convicted rapist, the new law recommends 21 years imprisonment for the rape of an adult and life imprisonment for the rape of a minor.”
While signing the law, governor El-Rufai noted that in addition, such convicts will be listed in the sex offenders register to be published by the Attorney-General of the state.
He stated that these drastic penalties are required to help further protect children from such serious crimes.
See details of the amended Penal Code below.
The Kaduna State Penal Code (amendment) law 2020 amends the penal code law (no.5) of Kaduna State, 2017 by substituting section 258 as follows:
1. Whoever commits rape of a child below the age of fourteen (14) years shall on conviction, be punished with surgical castration and death.
2. Whoever has sexual intercourse with a male child below the age of fourteen years shall be punished with surgical castration and death.
3. Where a female adult is convicted for the offence of rape of a child, the court shall punish the accused with bilateral salpingectomy and death.
4. Where the victim is above fourteen years, the court shall on conviction sentence the accused with a punishment of surgical castration and life imprisonment.
5. Where the convict is a child, the court shall order as appropriate under the children and young person law cap 26 laws of Kaduna State 1991.
6. Where the victim is a child, the court shall in addition to the conviction, order that the convict be listed in the sex offenders register to be published by the Attorney General.
7. Where the court is trying the offence of rape involving a child below the age of fourteen years, corroboration of a medical report shall be necessary.
He said the competition is strictly a community affair and it requires the active involvement of all stakeholders.
No fewer than 10,000 persons, including youths, mostly from higher educational institutions and other senior citizens, are expected to participate in the race.
The committee chairman adds that the sale forms for participation in the race would soon commence. He adds that the cost of the forms ranges from N5,000 for adults to N3,000 for children below 18 and free for athletes at 65 and above.
Prizes would be awarded to the top 10 male and female local and international participants.
The Commissioner for Sports Development, Professor Kabir Mato said the government intends to make the competition an annual event as obtained in Lagos and the United Kingdom.
Mato adds that the race would not only create healthy living but promote and strengthen the bonding among communities in the state.
In the other local governments, the gunmen also killed four people, while some other residents have been declared missing.
Attacks, An Act Of Criminality
Shortly after the attacks, the state governor, Nasir El-Rufai, condemned the act, describing the incidents as actions of criminality and sheer evil.
A statement by the Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs, Samuel Aruwan, on Sunday, said the Governor received briefs on the situations in Kidandan, Rigachikun, Kuyanbana, Buruku general area, and also Buda, within the five LGAs listed, and condoled with families who lost their loved ones in the attacks.
The statement explained that despite the recent attacks, the Kaduna State Government will continue to work with security agencies in the ongoing operations against bandits, being coordinated by the Defence Headquarters.
He urged communities to strongly stand together and confront criminality.
The governor noted that bandits should not be allowed to inflict such pain and then have their actions divide their victims along religious and ethnic lines.
“This criminality is an attack on our unity and collective well-being. Government condoles with the families that lost their loved ones to the sheer criminality of the bandits. Security agencies have been directed to double up and intensify operations against bandits and raids on their hideouts.”
The Governor, however, welcomed the peace pact between Dangoma, Takau, and Zikpak communities in Jema’a local government area.
He described the move as a step towards restoring peace and charged the communities to uphold their obligations in the agreement to secure peace and advance development in the state.
Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, has asked security agencies to arrest the killers of a 12-year-old herder, Usman Abdullahi, by some persons at Sabzuro-Tunga Nok Road in Jaba Local Government Area of the state.
He, however, commended Fulani and Ham leaders in Jaba for de-escalating tension and keeping the peace after the incident.
The Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs in Kaduna, Samuel Aruwan, gave the commendation on behalf of the governor on Saturday during a peace advocacy engagement between leaders of both ethnic groups at Ungwan Tunga in Nok District.
Aruwan, who visited the parents of the deceased at their settlement in company with the District Head of Nok, Fulani leaders, security officials, and Jaba LGA Chairman, commiserated with them over the unfortunate incident.
He gave an assurance that the government shared in their grief and promised that effort was ongoing by the security agencies to apprehend those behind the death of their son.
The commissioner also commended them for not taking the law in their hands but chose to report the matter to the appropriate authorities.
He called for the sharing of vital information with the government and security agencies to enhance timely intervention to emerging security challenges.
On his part, the Chairman of Jaba LGA, Benjamin Jock, explained that Usman Abdullahi was killed by yet-to-be-identified persons on the outskirts of Sabzuro-Tunga Nok Road some days ago and his body was dumped inside a bush.
Usman’s father, Abdullahi Wakili, who spoke in Hausa, thanked the government delegation for the visit.
He also assured them of absolute recourse to the law, hence their cooperation with security personnel investigating the case.
Wakili said, “All I know is that despite all that happened, I leave everything for God. I know that security operatives are doing their best. I pray that God will help them during their investigation to find the culprit.
“I also thank His Excellency, the governor of Kaduna State for his support. May God lead you all back to your various destinations safely.”
Jaba is one of the most peaceful local government areas in Kaduna State with no record of ethno-religious conflicts.
To ensure lasting peace in the LGA, the state government said it would provide needed support for the security agencies to investigate and arrest Usman’s killers with a view to bringing them to justice.
President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Olumide Akpata, has described the formation of a parallel NBA as unfortunate, calling for a united body at a time when the country needs them the most.
Mr Akpata who was sworn in as NBA’s 30th President, while giving his inaugural speech on Friday, faulted the move to establish a regional bar.
“I am not unaware of very recent events and agitations that have tended to divide our Bar along regional and religious lines. This is rather unfortunate for an egalitarian Association like ours. The Bar that I want to lead henceforth is one that is united on all fronts and that recognises that our diversity is, perhaps, our greatest strength. I plead with all Nigerian lawyers to bear this philosophy of unity in mind as we commence a new journey together today.
“This enormous task cannot be achieved if we continue to fan the embers of division at a time when we desperately need to unite and speak with one firm voice. We must be kind, magnanimous, respectful, and sensitive in our words and actions, as doing otherwise would be a great disservice to our vision of building a stronger and formidable bar. Now is the time to come together because a divided Bar is a defeated Bar.”
Following the withdrawal of the invitation extended by the Bar to the Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, some lawyers had alleged discrimination against the governor.
Two lawyers based in Kaduna, Nuhu Ibrahim and Abdulbasit Suleiman, describing themselves as Convener 1 and 2, on Thursday, announced that they and others of like minds had formed a ‘New Nigerian Bar Association’ NNBA.
In a statement released on social media, the lawyers said: “The New Nigerian Bar Association members feel that their interests are no longer taken into consideration in major decisions of the NBA hence the formation of this Association.
According to them, membership of the NBA is not mandatory, adding that Section 40 of the Constitution permits freedom of association.
The new NBA members said they were in consultations with “very Senior Lawyers of Northern Nigeria extraction and those practicing therein with a view to constituting the Trustees and for purposes of fixing a date for the formal inauguration of the Association.”
The NNBA also claimed that the NBA offices were lopsided against Northern lawyers.
“A cursory chronicle of the membership composition of major organs of the NBA would reveal lopsided representation despite having large numbers of Lawyers from all parts of the country and especially Northern Nigeria who have diligently paid their Bar practicing fees and have distinguished themselves in the legal profession.
“The New Nigerian Bar Association feels that Lawyers, as professionals like Doctors and Accountants should have more than one Association regulated by the General Council of the Bar.”
Senior Lawyers Fault Move, Call For Caution
The news of a parallel body of the Nigerian Bar Association has elicited mixed reactions from lawyers across the country.
While some are opposed to the move, others say it is within the rights of the conveners to do the same.
Mike Ozekhome, SAN, who spoke at the handover ceremony of the NBA leadership on Friday, advised aggrieved members against forming an alternative association.
Ozekhome said, “drop all these issues of trying to form an alternative Bar, whether you call it new NBA or progressive NBA, it’s not going to work.
“The reason is that when you begin to create a different Bar, calling it, for example, Northern Bar or new Bar, then people, very soon, are going to start calling for Southern Nigerian Army, Southern Nigerian Navy, Western Nigerian Air Force, Eastern Nigeria Tax Authority, etc; where are we heading to? That is nothing but balkanisation of Nigeria and God forbid.”
Meanwhile, another senior lawyer, Yusuf Ali SAN, said, “Nobody has contacted me about the formation of any parallel organisation. I’ve not been consulted, I’ve not been contacted, but I want to advise caution on all the sides.
“Our elders have a saying that beheading is not the answer for headache. We are better off with our numbers and diversity of the Association.”
He also said that if in the future such a split becomes necessary, “it shouldn’t be borne out of disagreement. It should be something that comes because our numbers have become so huge and that there are needs. It should also be a pan-Nigerian thing.
“So, for me, this is just an event; it is quite unfortunate, but I think it is a matter that we should address at a conference table.
“I don’t think we should join Nigerian politicians to behave the way they normally do; you’re dissatisfied, form your own party. I’m dissatisfied, I form my own party. That’s not the best way to go, and as leaders in the country, by virtue of our training, we should show a good example and provide leadership to others to emulate us. We should not because we have issues within ourselves, balkanise our association.
“Some of us have our reservations about the decision of the NBA excluding Mallam El-Rufai, from the conference, but, that notwithstanding, we should still keep our heads and take rational decisions in the interest of our Association, our profession, and our country. I ask for understanding and caution.”
In his own reaction, Jibrin Okutepa SAN said the New NBA’s move was not surprising considering recent happenings in the Bar.
He argued that many honest lawyers were disenchanted because the NBA had lost its values, and the New NBA members had the constitutional right to form another association.
“If you have read me in several papers – myself, Femi Falana and several others – we have spoken sufficiently to the Constitutional iniquities of making Nigerian lawyers be members of the NBA, particularly that the NBA has lost it value. “So, if any lawyer feels aggrieved that he wants to form a new association, what stops them from doing so?
That is within their rights under Section 49 of the Constitution. So, I do not share the views of those who say you must be forced to be a member of the NBA. I don’t share that view. We have chosen to be members of the NBA because we believe that the NBA will live up to the standard of its motto, which is promoting the rule of law.
“But in the past years have you seen NBA promoting rule of law? Or the rule of personal aggrandisement?, he asked.
The Sultan of Sokoto, Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar II on Monday paid a private visit to Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State.
The Sultan’s visit comes barely 24 hours after the former Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi visited El-Rufai to discuss issues bothering on security and economy of the state.
Upon his arrival at the Government House in Kaduna, the Sultan went straight to the governor’s office where he held a closed-door meeting with El-Rufai and some government officials including the Senator representing Kaduna North in the National Assembly, Suleiman Abdu-Kwari.
Although the Sultan declined to speak to reporters after the meeting, Governor Nasir El-Rufai said the meeting discussed the security challenges in southern Kaduna and other parts of the state.
The governor disclosed that he received advice and encouragement from the royal father towards finding a lasting solution to the security challenges in the state.
He appreciated the Sultan for his fatherly visit and support in ensuring that peace returns to the state.
Kaduna has been experiencing a series of attacks with a recent one carried out six weeks ago.
On July 19, 21 people were killed while 28 others sustained various degrees of injuries when gunmen attacked Kukum Daji Village of Kaura Local Government Area of the state.
According to the President of the Community, Mr. Yashen Titus, the gunmen suspected to be herdsmen, invaded the venue of a wedding party in the community at about 10 pm.
Similarly, on July 7, no fewer than 38 persons lost their lives in separate attacks on two villages in Sanga Local Government Area of Kaduna state on July 7.
The Council Chairman, Emmanuel Adamu, who confirmed the attack, said the gunmen unleashed mayhem on Ankpon Village in Nandu and Kabamu Village in Fadan Karshi, all of Numana district.
While describing the incident as unfortunate, he said the gunmen killed 38 persons including women and children.
Following the continued attacks in the state, the Defence Headquarters deployed Special Forces to halt the senseless killings and restore peace in Southern Kaduna.
Receiving the troops at Sector 7, the headquarters of Operation Safe Haven on August 14, the Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs, Mr Samuel Aruwan charged them to take the battle to the bandits and ensure that peace and security are restored to southern Kaduna.