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The House of Representatives has passed for second reading the bills seeking to create state police and other state security services.
This bill seeks to excise Item 45 (Police and other government security services) from the Exclusive Legislative List and place same on the Concurrent Legislative List to give allowance for different state governments to legislate on security matters, which will effectively give state governments powers to establish state police.
Sponsor of the bill, Hon Luke Onofiok (PDP, Akwa Ibom) while leading the debate its general principles noted that the federal structuring of security does not encourage community policing or localization of policing.
“Recruitment and subsequent deployment of police officers in their local area is one of the major ways of curbing crime. Such officers understand the area, terrain, language, behavior and attitude of the people he or she is policing,” he said.
According to Onofiok, the primary responsibility of every government all over the world is to protect and preserve the lives and property of its citizens and to maintain law and order.
“The principle of social contract is chiefly anchored on this responsibility where the people relinquish and contracted their rights to government for the protection of their lives and property,” he stated.
Onofiok, however, said failure on the part of government to keep to this basic responsibility/contractual term portends danger.
“Many years after independence, Nigeria has continually been beset with insecurity ranging from terrorism, kidnapping, armed robbery, and domestic violence.
“Granted that there is no society without crime or manifestation of criminal behaviour, our inability to bring to the barest minimum crime is a scathing indictment on the current security architecture and structure in the country,” he said.
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