The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Governors’ Forum has called for the immediate amendment of the 1999 Constitution to devolve more powers to the states with respect to security arrangements that would culminate in the operation of a state policing system and efficient security architecture.
The Forum in a communiqué issued at the end of its meeting held in Ibadan, Oyo State on Monday, called on President Muhammadu Buhari to immediately send an Executive Bill to the National Assembly to amend the constitution to create state police.
In the communiqué which was signed by the Forum’s chairman and Sokoto State governor, Rt. Hon. Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, the governors further reviewed the state of the nation, particularly on practical steps to be taken immediately to advance the conversation on the worsening security situation and collapsing economy of the country.
“The meeting called on Mr. President as the Chief Executive Officer of Nigeria and Commander in Chief of Nigerian Armed Forces to immediately send an Executive Bill to the National Assembly to amend the Nigerian Constitution to devolve more powers to the states with respect to security arrangements culminating in some form of State Policing and the general security architecture,’’ they said.
In the interim, the Forum said the President should summon an immediate meeting of the Nigerian Police Council, which comprises Mr President and all state governors and other critical stakeholders to evolve and implement strategies to combat the present threats to “our union, especially with respect to policing.
It agreed that the Police Force still remains the appropriate institution to secure democracy and should not be subjected to personal attacks, adding that the welfare, training, equipment, funding of all security agencies should be given priority.
The Forum also expressed support the for earlier position taken by the Nigeria Governors Forum (NGF), Northern State Governors Forum (NSGF) and recently by the Southern Governors Forum (SGF), to adopt ranching as the most viable solution to the herder/farmer clashes in Nigeria; the restructuring of the Nigerian federation to devolve more powers and functions to the states; and reform of various civil institutions to achieve efficiency and equity for all sections of Nigeria.
It enjoined Nigerians to work together to achieve peace and harmony with one another, devoid of discrimination based on ethnicity, religion and other cleavages.
The Forum called on the “incompetent and rudderless APC Government to take bold and deliberate steps to de-escalate and lower tensions in our country, and concentrate on projects and policies that will enhance and promote national unity and cohesion.”
It also reiterated an earlier call for the National Assembly to expedite action on the passage of the Electoral Act that would ensure a free and fair election, including provisions for electronic accreditation and electronic transmission of votes.
It thanked the host governor, Seyi Makinde, of Oyo State for being a gracious and wonderful host, and congratulated him for the many landmark developmental projects he has executed, and urged him to continue to work with all stakeholders in the South-West Zone to ensure that PDP takes over majority of the States in the zone.
Other governors in attendance included Udom Emmanuel (Akwa Ibom), Douye Diri (Bayelsa), Samuel Ortom (Benue), Ifeanyi Okowa (Delta), Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi (Enugu), Nyesom Wike (Rivers), Oluseyi Makinde (Oyo), Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri (Adamawa), Godwin Obaseki (Edo), Bala Mohammed (Bauchi), and the deputy governor of Zamfara State, Mahdi Mohd, who represented Governor Muhammed Bello Matawalle.
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