By Paschal Emeka (Abuja)
Dr Ahmed Abubakar Audi, mni, Commandant-General, NSCDC
A civil society group, the Coalition of Civil Societies and Media Executives for Good Governance in Nigeria (COCMEGG) has commended and applauded the recent gigantic strides and decisions taken by the present Commandant-General of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, Dr Ahmed Abubakar Audi, mni.
In a press release signed by the President of COCMEGG, Omoba Kenneth Aigbegbele and Secretary, Comrade James Okoronkwo respectively, the group listed the commendable strides as licensing and certification of 17 private guard companies, an action aimed at reducing the incessant security challenges across the nation. This is also to guarantee the safety and security of critical national assets, as well as boost the security of lives and property and to enhance intelligence gathering mechanism at the community level.
According to the statement, the issuing of certificates to the 17 private guard companies was as a result of an enormous due diligence initiated and conducted in collaboration with sister security agencies like the Directorate of State Services (DSS) and others, so as to meet up with international best practices and shore up the security architecture of the country.
Just recently, the Commandant-General gave marching orders to state Commandants of the NSCDC to brace-up to the challenges of safeguarding the nation, especially schools at this critical time, when kidnapping of children has become a daily occurrence.
The NSCDC, under the present leadership also developed a blueprint with other sister security agencies to curb the incessant kidnappings at schools by hoodlums and also check the protection of critical national assets such as pipelines, electricity pylons, stations and cables, telecommunications masts and installations. Others include the complete enhancement of the agro-rangers to provide cover for agriculture, farmers and pastoralists so as to grow and protect our food security like never before.
The organization specifically lauded the proposed Special Female Squad initiated by the present CG from the array of gallant female personal drawn from various commands, whose process was flagged off few days ago at the NSCDC’s headquarters. The special female squad is one of the strategic repositioning initiatives by the present CG to rebrand, re-jig and rejuvenate the corps to a world class organization with best global practice.
The female squad that are to compete favourably with their male counterparts in all ramifications, will undergo training under a rigorous mechanism as well as capacity building programme in the College of Peace Studies and Disaster Management in Katsina.
The Coalition quoted the Commandant-General to have stated, “the Female Squad is underway to make it combat-ready and formidable as they will be specially trained for physical and tactical maneuvering, especially for special intervention and operations which will in no small measure help to address some of the country’s internal security challenges.”
The Commandant-General, according to the Coalition, also assured the candidates of his resolve to provide the necessary logistics and minimal comfort during the training programme and asked them to put in their best at all times in restoring the glory of the Corps.
Accordingly, COCMEGG also added a voice to the clarion call and a path on the shoulder of the CG, as a well-thought out plan to reposition the Corps, for the posting of personal to re-jig the system, boost the esprit-de-corps and enhance officers and men’s morale towards the job. This is based on what the CG said, that, the officers that have stayed beyond 15 years on a position will be moved to other places within the country to enhance manpower development and the effective and efficient delivery of professionalism at all times.
The Coalition quoted the CG to have explained to the officers and men, to be ready for the wind of change sweeping the entire organization for enhanced professionalism and to be duty-bound for the safety and security of not only critical assets but the protecting of lives and property and that officers affected by the new postings should see themselves as patriots and should not perceive the development as an act of victimization and explained that transfer/redeployment is one of the ways by which human capacity can be enhanced within a system.
COCMEGG therefore commends the transformational blueprint as encapsulated by the Commandant-General’s zero tolerance on corruption, indiscipline and unprofessionalism, and hereby enjoins well-meaning Nigerians, stakeholders and sister agencies to support the new paradigm shift at NSCDC; to collaborate and partner with the Corps in order to safeguard critical national infrastructure as well as protect agro-allied investments, capacity building and information dissemination to reduce incessant kidnappings, rustling, herders/farmers clashes across the country.
But it is especially following the licensing of the 17 private guard companies, that COCMEGG has lauded the present leadership of NSCDC, for rising up to its onerous responsibility of protecting critical public infrastructure. It also noted that due diligence was followed, while the DSS played pivotal role of vetting the licensing of the private guard companies.
In the final analysis, COCMEGG hereby urges “the Audi led NSCDC to remain focused and consolidate on the harmonious relation it has built with sister security agencies for optimum performance, strengthening the Agro-Rangers Initiative with a view to maximizing the potentials of the unit for national food security.”