Insecurity: Nigeria needs state police not community policing – Obasanjo


‘Seun Ibukun-Oni, Abuja


Daily Courier – Former President Olusegun Obasanjo, on Thursday, joined the call for the creation of state police to enable the country effectively overcome the current exacebating security challenges facing the country.

Obasanjo, who played host to the leadership of the National Association of Ex-Local Government Chairmen in Nigeria expressly declared that creation of a state police would be a better option to the establishment of community policing recently approved by the federal government.

Led by its pioneer national chairman, Hon. Albert Asipa, body of the former elected Local Government chairmen had paid Obasanjo a courtesy visit at his Abeokuta home in the Ogun State capital.

Ashipa had earlier told the former President why they decided to come together in all the 774 local governments in the country, declaring, “we can also contribute to the economy and political developments of the country.”

But Obasanjo, who was responding to one of the speakers, Chinwe Monu-Olarewaju’s submission on creation of community police to curb the wave of insecurity, quipped that the idea needed to be changed.

Commending the initiative behind the formation of the body, Obasanjo said the development clearly showed that some local government chairmen in the country were better managers than even the top elected leaders at the national level.

“Our situation in Nigeria concerns everyone, particularly, the case of terrorism. The case has gotten over the issue of community police. It is now state police. It is from that state police that we can now be talking about community police,” Obasanjo explained.

The former president also advocated for the need to strengthen the traditional leadership system and the local government administration in Nigeria, “which I prepared during the popular Murtala/Obasanjo administration”, stressing that he was of the strong belief that “such tier of government to work truly as a local government, they have their own Executive, Judiciary and Legislature”.

“They were working and they were very visible, building and managing roads, looking into education, health, local administration, agriculture, but they were all gone,” Obasanjo said.

He said that the experience the former chairmen had in local government administration was enough to aspire for higher posts, stressing that some of them have the competence, ability and integrity to get to these posts.

Obasanjo, who was presented with a letter of appointment as a Life Patron of the group, assured that he would look into their request, assuring further that he would be available on request for their needs at all times.