-Senate to impose state policing in 2 weeks
YBTC News-Nigeria Senate yesterday resolved to urgently put machinery in motion for state and community policing through constitution amendment to that effect.
The upper legislative chamber has therefore mandated its Committee on Constitution Review, chaired by the Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, to start work on the process immediately and report to the Senate in two weeks.
Similarly, it also mandated its Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters headed by Senator David Umaru (APC Niger East) to come up with a bill for creation of Truth, Peace and Reconciliation Commission within the next two weeks, towards a platform for the promotion of peace and unity in the nation generally
The Senate equally resolved to expedite action on Police Reform Bill already before it.
These resolutions followed heated debate by senators on the floor of the upper house on the recent killings that took place in some villages in Plateau State where over 155 people died.
Senator David Jonah Jang (PDP Plateau South) had during a motion on the killings, condemned in its entirety the wanton killings in the land and helplessness of the security agencies, particularly the centralised Police Force.
Jang, who is the immediate past governor of the state, said a total of 155 people were killed in the last Plateau attack by suspected herdsmen out of which 98 were from Mangu Local Government.
The lawmaker said the way the killings were carried out for several hours by the attackers without any of the security agencies in the centralized security architecture responding, further shows that the time for decentralization of the force is now.
In his contribution, Ekweremadu, said as long as the country refused to do the needful in terms of state police, the wanton killings in the land will not end.
“I have been saying it here anytime issues of senseless killings in the land come up that creation of state police is the way out since the centralized police have proved to be incapable of addressing the problem.
“By tomorrow (today) or next, a bill for constitutional provision for state and community policing, shall be sponsored by me in this chamber”, he said.
Other Senators like Olamilekan Adeola (APC Lagos West), Godswill Akpabio ( PDP Akwa Ibom North West), and Barnabas Gemade (APC Benue North East), among others, supported the call for creation of state police as the surest way out of the problem .
But Senators Adamu Aliero (APC Kebbi Central) and Kabiru Marafa (APC Zamfara Central) kicked against it, arguing that strengthening of the centralized police force through adequate funding and manpower was what the problem required.
In his remarks, the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki said: “The killings are totally unacceptable and we must condemn it in totality.
“These are acts of criminality and we should not encourage any other colouration to it. Be it religious, this is criminality and as such we have a role to ensure that we must address this criminality.
“We believe there is need for urgent review of the security architecture.
“We must not only see from the point of view that there is danger to security there is also danger if we really believe that we are going to push our economy, it is going to become stagnant”.
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