The most important role of the government is protecting its citizens from all security threats. This means creating a strong system for the defense of both the political class and the everyday citizen.
Plateau State in recent times has witnessed an unprecedented level of insecurity ranging from Kidnapping, cultism, robbery, looting and other acts of criminality.
However, Governor, Simon Bako Lalong has in his “Three Points Policy” clearly made Peace, Security and Good Governance as the foremost point. Furthermore, in singling out the Governors first 3 strategies for his second stead as Governor of plateau state, the Government stated that it hopes to accomplish the following:
Consolidate on the gains of security and peace building, by focusing on sustainable peaceful co-existence, equitable development; inclusive governance process that takes into consideration the needs of the most marginalized, including women, young people, minorities and people with disabilities as well as protecting human rights through appropriate Institutional and Legal framework. These strategies are designed to continuously build confidence and uplift the quality of life of the Plateau citizenry, which represent representing a dynamic force in the national arena.
Pursue the upscaling of the efforts of the Plateau Peace Building Agency to enable the implementation of the Strategic Road Map for Peace and the Community Security Architecture Dialogue (CSAD) as prerequisite for breaking the cycle of violence; enhancing resilience; promoting social cohesion, reconciliation and healing through forgiveness.
Sustain and enhance necessary support to the security agencies and boosting the Operation Rainbow early warning/crises detection mechanisms.
With the lingering security challenges and the inability of the security apparatus in Plateau state to guarantee the safety and security of all its citizens, the question that borders everyone in Plateau state today is “can there be security?” Is the security of lives and properties achievable?
The sad reality is that government at all levels has not done enough in confronting frontally the situation head-on and dealing with it decisively, others have argued that the situation has a political undertone or inclination calculated to serve the interest of certain political gods, who have been dissatisfied and disgruntled about the political manifestations in the state.
The Men of the Operation Safe Haven with a little over 2000 men, must be commended for their continuous efforts in ensuring peace and order with various arrests of criminal elements in and around Plateau state, however, it is clear the OPSH can be supported and encouraged to do more. The state Operation Rainbow has been a little too quiet despite the happenings in the state as such must be revamped. The police are shorthanded as various testimonies from citizens who reached out to the police in distress times have confirmed that the outfit is unequipped to handle the variables ranging from theft to organized armed robbery, kidnapping and demand for ransom, assassination, repeated invasion and blockading of business installations and farmlands, social injustice, cattle rustling and unlawful criminal activities. All these variables of crimes and social maladies must be tackled by the state government in the following…
- Governor Lalong despite being commended as a man of Peace must put his foot down as the number one security officer in the state and emulate other State Governor’s model of tackling insecurity through the deployment of modern technology, security support system, mobile vehicles and gadgets to support the effort of the Federal Government and security personnel in combating all forms of crime and criminality ravaging most parts of the state.
- Addressing the weak security system in the state resulting from inadequate equipment for the security arm of government, both in weaponry and training. This is in addition to the poor attitudinal and behavioral disposition of security personnel. In many cases, security personnel assigned to deal with given security situations lack the expertise and equipment to handle the situations in a way to prevent them from occurring. The state is in need of the Governor’s promise to Sustain and enhance necessary support to the security agencies and boosting the Operation Rainbow in the state.
- The State Government must create enabling laws to enhance the operations of security agencies as well as prosecution of culprits. Such laws can also be made to serve as a deterrent to all intending criminal minds in the state and If such Laws exist they should be projected to the general public. For example, we have seen the destruction of Houses used as criminal hideouts by other states.
- A large number of the population of the state is frustrated and has lost hope, especially the youths, and have now emerged to express their disillusion about the pervasive state of inequality and lack of opportunities. Youths have been used to perpetrate most criminal acts due to restiveness as such Government must double its Peacebuilding efforts and Small and mid-size enterprises (SMEs) programs to take more youths.
- Local Vigilante – There is also a need to modernize the local vigilante with training, intelligence sharing, advanced technology (Community CCTV Cams), logistics, motivation and change of orientation. This effort will enhance the operational capabilities of the local vigilante’s security by identifying avenues that would enable them to respond appropriately to community security challenges and other threats. The role of these vigilantes can not be thrown aside as their efforts during the COVID-19 lockdown were out for all to see. As such the Vigilantes can assist the Police and law enforcement agencies to curb crime and help protect and preserve public property also in the maintenance of peace at public functions where the need arises.
Security is a business of all as such Plateau state’s Security and development are related in the sense that being a public good, the imperative to maintain security competes with other public goods such as education, health and infrastructure for public funds. Insecurity, therefore, becomes a drain on local and national resources at the expense of development and peoples’ well-being thereby, having adverse consequences on economic growth and development. The government must therefore own up its godly duty in providing security for all.