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‘Kidnapping in Kogi has been brought to a standstill’

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‘Kidnapping in Kogi has been brought to a standstill’

From John Akubo, Lokoja

The Kogi State Police Commissioner Wilson Inalegu told Nationalupdate in Lokoja that his men have overcome kidnappers escapades in spite of the few reported cases.

What has your command done to contain the menace of kidnappers in Kogi

Kidnapping has come down drastically, in the time past in Kogi State on some days you can have more than two three cases. That is no longer the case, we had a long break, we never recorded anything in terms of kidnap untill recently when we had the unfortunate incidence of the killing of an Osun State Permanent Secretary in the Bureau of General services Mrs Olufunke Oluwakemi Kolawole and the kidnap of the niece of the Kogi State chief Judge Barrister Rabi Ozavize ovosi, But I can tell you with all sense of modesty that we have fought kidnapping to a standstill. They will continue to make attempt but I assure you that those guys that committed the heinous crime of the kidnap and murder of Mrs. Kolawole the permanent secretary would be brought to book. We would not rest on our oars whatever it takes we would get there.
On the night of 19th to 20th of July we had a kidnap in Kabba, my officers didn’t wait for a report to be made, they heard a gun shot and they proceeded to the scene. Then the kidnappers had already left with the victim in the booth of his car, they gave them a hot chase but their vehicles brushed two okadas with injuries. And they opened the door and took to their heels into the nearby bush and the police rescued the victim from the booth unhurt. They recovered the machete that they used and some charms but the officers after combing the scene of the incidence got a lead and apprehended two of the suspect yesterday who mentioned two others the four suspects are in custody as we speak. My personal also have arrested three kidnap suspects from Edo State who abducted a trailer driver last year, the trailer driver, smart guy identified the two of them, they have been apprehended.

We rescued a pastor last week who was kidnapped, my men stormed the den of the kidnappers where they had made a tent he was rescued and the suspect arrested. The suspect was kidnapped from Okpo and driven to Inye where we rescued him. What am I saying? Our desire is to end kidnapping totally in Kogi State but don’t forged we share common border with ten States FCT included, our hills and valleys, the thick bush. We are also in the bush now tracking deep into the forest and that is also keeping my officers fit. There is no hiding place for them because we will do everything possible to smoke them out and that we are doing. It is unfortunate for the death of Mrs Kolawole and kidnap of Barrister Rabi.

I give assurance that all the hoodlums involved in that kidnap would be apprehended, this morning we have picked two they are being interrogated in the CID, we are on the trail of the third and we are cooperating with sister agencies and public spirited individuals. I want to say that the public in Kogi State 99.9% are totally against crime and that is why they volunteer information. I recall on on March, 15th when we went with the Governor to demolish houses of kidnappers and other criminals it was a carnival like atmosphere, that tells you that these people don’t want crime. Just very negligible number are into crime but that is what it takes so we invite them to come and cooperate with us.Kidnapping

flasbu point and a gateway State poses serious issue security wise what are you doing to meet up?

I want to thank the Inspector General of police who has been showing a lot of interest in the security of Kogi State. When the last incidence happened around Osara/Irekpeni the IG called me, he wanted to know what we were doing about it and the kind of support we needed and I want say that he has been giving us support, the IG’s technical intelligence unit has been mobilised to support us. I spoke with Kyari the DIG operations and he asked what we needed because of the importance the police management team led by Ibram K. Idris attach to the security of lives and property in the country and Kogi State in particular because of the strategic location. I have somebody dedicated to Kogi that when we have such cases we get support no protocols. Then the IG’s intelligence response unit is also mandated to give me support as well as the Federal SARS. I have support from the AIG zone 8 who is regularly talking with me to see what area to come and he is personally involved and he goes around with his officers. In fact he set up a special team to go on supervision and then the collaboration that we have with sister agencies; we have a platform Head of security Agencies (HOSA) in Kogi State where we have regular interactions and we compare and share notes, I am talking of the Nigeria Police force, the DSS, the Army, the naval unit and the Civil defence and the huge number of the vigilTee spread all over the State working with the different police divisions. There is a lot of collaborations. The Governor of Kogi State has been extremely supportive of the police command in terms of logistics. In the short time I have been here he has supplied us with utility vehicles this is in addition to those he supplied earlier. I made a special request. He is always asking and wants to know what is happening. I think he realises his responsibility that being in such position he is got to offer his support.

What about the cattle breeders?
We work with the Meyeti Allah, the cattle breeders association, to a large extent. It has been very helpful. We built a strong relationship with the entirety of Kogi population, the motor drivers Union, the market people, telephone repairers, other bodies like INEC, NYSC, the VIO, name them. We have two programs; ‘The police and you which is held on NTA Lokoja every Thursday 5. 30to 6.30 in the evening, at no cost but as part of their corporate social responsibility and this is a live phone in program and we are asked about the conduct of our personals, the crime situation,

When I came on board I approach NTA and they gave us that concession. Another program on Radio Kogi 11am on Saturdays ‘Police Dairy’ and we have Grace FM, where we also have interaction. We open ourselves to the public for accountability and transparency. We don’t even know who is going to call but we say talk to us. Some will call to say they saw your boys at so so place this is what they were doing, so they are helping us to check the menace of criminal activities, the conduct of our personals and then they become par takers in the issue of security. When I came on board this is what we are doing with the three programs so that the public can interphase with us directly. The first two edition I was there personally with my DC operations, DC CID, area commanders and very soon DPOs, everybody and then we are taking notes. Area commander in Ajaokuta this is a complaint we have, we have the S-Squad that deals with corruption on the highways so we open ourselves bringing police service to the doorsteps of Kogites.

What are you doing about the Vigilante group and the danger of their becoming security threats.

The Vigilate according to laid down procedure cannot operate on their own they must operate under close police supervision. They operate under police and we carry out background check on every individual that belong to either neighbourhood watch or the Vigilate. Therefore once they misbehave we deal with them like any other criminal. However you cannot talk of community policing with involving the community because what we understand Police and public adopting common approach to problem solving. If you are in Oguma the headquarters of Bassa and the chief talks to you he has everybody both men and women but who can support us? We have the hunters, then the names will be given to the DPO who will screen them and those who are considered worthy in character and in Behaviour would be allowed to participate but there is a continuous monitoring to see and evaluate the suitability of some individuals continuing in that.

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Interview

Bill for good life for Bokoharam repentants is weakness to tackle insecurity -senator Alex Kadiri

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Bill for good life for Bokoharam repentants is weakness to tackle insecurity -senator Alex Kadiri

Senator Alex Usman Kadiri an APC stalwart, was a senator who represented Kogi East from 1999 to 2003, he expressed sadness over the level of insecurity, blaming security agencies for their failure.

Excerpts

What is your view of the bill seeking for repentant Bokoharam to be rehabilitated, sponsored for further studies abroad, after the destruction they have caused?

Well there are two ways of looking at this subject. I feel sad that my country cannot control the activities of this insurgency, whether Bokoharam, pure straightforward, terrorists, cattle rustlers, kidnappers, thugs and so on. It shows the weakness of Government. Giving them amnesty and scholarship to travel abroad for studies is bribery. It shows that the Government methods have failed they are looking for scapegoats but who tells you that after they return and there is no job waiting for them, they will not resume their act of terrorism? We went into amnesty in the south south because 95% of our income was coming from oil and these fellows were busy blowing up pipelines. Why is it impossible for the Nigerian Army, Nigerian police and the Nigerian Airforce to control insecurity. Every State is now affected, you cannot drive from Lokoja to Ayangba now before 10am or After 4pm, you can not go from here to Kaduna at any hour of the day. Most of the incidences are unreported.

Can we say the FG is overwhelmed?

The security situation has overpowered the Nigerian Government, we cannot pretend. That is why they are talking about amnesty, promoting a bill in the national assembly to make sure you give them blanket amnesty, send them for studies. All these things will not work on the long run. Let me ask this question, the people they sent for studies in Europe, how many of them completed the programs. A good number of them refused to come back and they did not enroll for any study and they are stranded there causing havoc. Those that returned did they come back to meet any work. Has insurgency or banditry ceased in Niger Delta because of the amnesty? No. We just need a good Government with good policies that will affect the majority of Nigerians. If the chaps in Bokoharam which we don’t even know whether they are Al-Qaeda, or ISIS or whatever, nobody knows who they are, we don’t even know who we are fighting, we don’t know who and who enter this country every hour from our northern borders or from the or from the West through Cotonou, we don’t know how many we are in this country our borders are porous, they are not guarded, not manned and those that are there manning them close the other eye collect bribe and allow them in. They come in with their arms and ammunitions, nobody is checking anybody.

What would say about Dr. Obadaih Mailafia’s disclosure?

When I listened to Dr. Obadaih Mailafia former deputy Governor of Tue CBN yesterday I shed tears for my country because he is a man who has a stake in this country, he was deputy Governor of CBN so he is a stakeholder in the Nigerian project and for him to say some of the things he said I feel sad for my country
How comes our service chiefs, Inspector general of police, director of DSS, director NIA, director Military intelligence, all of them are from the Northern part of the country where this problem is high, some of them are don’t have any idea as to his the problem can be solved. May be the president has more information than you and I have, that if he removes these persons the people he is likely to appear will not even measure up to the present people but at least it is better to try somebody else. It is a shame what we are passing through

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Restructuring: Doctrine of necessity not applicable, says senator Alex Kadiri

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Restructuring: Doctrine of necessity not applicable, says senator Alex Kadiri

Senator Alex Usman Kadiri an APC stalwart was a senator who represented Kogi East from 1999 to 2003, in this interview with the NationalUpdate in Abuja said the Doctrine of necessity can only be invoked when there is a serious issue like the death of Yaradua and the near death experienced by APC recently

The recent adoption of Doctrine of Necessity by the leadership of All Progressives Congress (APC) to address the intractable crisis within the party’s National Working Committee (NWC) has opened up discussions about the possibility that the nation could use such intervention to solve the problems of constitutional impediments, do you agree with that?

What the President did in sending the Adams Oshiomhole National Working Committee packing was the only option left for the party that was dying in Oshimhole’s we have cried, people like me have written, we have spoken, I have led delegations of Kogi people to meet with everybody that matters except the President, we met the Vice President twice. The party set up a reconciliation committee, the first was headed by Tony Momoh and the second one headed by General Garba, with Etteh, Etiebet as members, we cried, Adams Oshiomhole felt too powerful, too big, too insensitive and he was running the party as his personal property. No regular meetings were called and the few that were called when he speaks that would be the end. He was sending people to States as individuals to conduct primaries for the party, crooks, people who are known to be devils, criminals. They are sent to Kogi, Edo, Ondo and so in to go and conduct primary to elect Governor for the State on the platform of the party and people were wandering what that could mean, has the party gone to the dogs. The chairman and his deputy were not in talking terms that is Lawal Shaibu the deputy National chairman North, the secretary has gone to become Governor of Yobe State. When you go to the party office people would be waiting for whoever enters that office to give them money. That is why a man Like Governor Yahaya Bello is a king in that place. You can commit any blunder and come to the national secretariat to distribute cash, that is all they were waiting for. There is no structure, the staff were not catered for, no payment of salary everybody was grumbling so whoever enters there, no matter who he is even if he a a devil in human skin provided he is able to give them something to survive, the chairman of the party was feeding fat on the party. The President I am sure heard all these reports and he must have been fed up. Something had to give way, the other deputy national chairman Adebayo became minister, so the party was bereft of leadership. Oshiomhole was running the party from his house. If he says Alex Kadiri should go and be chairman of the panel to pick a candidate for us in Edo or Ondo, that is it, he makes criminals richer by that process. The public was watching us and the party was going down the drain. The party was at the point of death when the President intervened. So it was the doctrine of necessity that brought out the president into taking the action that he took and that has been able to save the party. The party is now moving ahead to stand on its own feet. So it was almost lying comatose.

How can, that model of the doctrine of necessity be brought to bare in other constitutional crises in the country?

I will not want to encourage it to be used anyhow. Let me take the tangential to another problem, look at the American President, Donald Trump, because he is not sure of winning the election he is now thinking of tinkering with the American election which has never been done, coming back home, if we think that we can solve all our problems through the doctrine of necessity, then we will end up killing the country. Supposed Buhari tomorrow feels that he wants to continue and have a third term just like Obasanjo tried and he gets people to start singing the chorus of the doctrine of necessity that is necessary for him to do another three years or fours to complete whatever he must have started then we are not practicing democracy. The doctrine of necessity can only be applied to very daring situations like the death of somebody like Yaradua, like the death of APC like Oshiomhole. Those are extreme circumstances under which this doctrine can be applied it shouldn’t be used anyhow.

The doctrine of necessity is like setting aside the constitution, what of the implication legally speaking, after the election in Edo if an aggrieved member decides to go to court?

That was what those of us leaders of this party are afraid of. Would you allow the party to die with Adams Oshiomhole sitting on the rot or we remove him and his cohorts from the leadership of the party so that the party can grow.
The elections in Edo and Ondo happen to have come at a period that these events were taking place. Any good party man, any honest party man who wants APC to grow, anybody who means well for this country would not go to court because of what has happened to this national working committee of the party because the decision of the President to dissolve the working committee hard wide acclamation, I sat down in my room here and I was very happy that the President cane out boldly to take that decision but you see he was very careful also. The primaries in Edo had been conducted just before he took that decision and he did not tamper with it. In his right senses he would have tampered with it, because here is Oshiomhole bringing a man as candidate of APC, unless you put Edo people at gun point, it is almost impossible or difficult for them to vote for him. Spoken words can not be swallowed after you have vomited it out. What Oshiomhole said about Eze Iyamu in 2016 they were so bad that EzeIyamu himself who never took Oshiomhole to court should be ashamed of coming out to ask for votes not to talk of the party whose chairman said so much about Ezeiyamu in 2016 now going around campaigning for him. We are just naked  in this country, we play naked politics.

Can this doctrine of necessity, be applied in terms of the constitutional hurdle of restructuring and evolution of powers?

No, those are long drawn issues. Restructuring cannot be done on the table, you are not sharing food. These are issues that come out of discussions and if you continue to restructure because the situation is bad now, any time the situation goes bad the way it is today, then we restructure, then we keep restructuring that is not how to go. All we need are competent hands handling the affairs of our country. Competent and honest hands to run the affairs of this country. If we have honesty and competence at the helm of affairs at all levels from Local Government to state and Federal level nobody will complain.
Again I will go back to America since we are copying them, Nobody cares where Donald Trump actually came from or Hillary Clinton or the Husband, or Obama. They saw competence in them at the time they were elected.
Somebody can come from the smallest State in the US, Rhode Island and run for President, somebody can also come from the largest State California and run for election and lose. Nobody is looking at the size of where you come from, they are looking for somebody who can pull the country together, who can gather competent hands to run the country. Nigeria needs competent hands to run this country not friends. Honesty and competence is what we need. So I don’t believe that we can apply the doctrine of necessity to restructuring or to any other thing, no. When specific issues arise like the APC was dying or was almost dead under Oshiomhole or when Yaradua died as President of Nigeria, we evoked these doctrines because they were necessary at that point in time. We cannot apply to restructuring or anything like that, No.

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Muhammed: SIP a fraud, conduit pipe for handlers

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Muhammed: SIP a fraud, conduit pipe for handlers

Second Republic lawmaker, Dr. Junaid Mohammed, in this interview with JOHN AKUBO, decried the modus operandi adopted for the National Social Investment Programmes (NSIPSs) saying it was fraught with irregularities. He also carpeted the National Assembly for meddling in an affair that is exclusively that of the executive branch to implement.


Given the controversy that the National Social Investment Programme has attracted lately, don’t you think the scheme is beginning to look like another failed project?


STRAIGHT away, what I will say is that I am not surprised that the latest adventure into the so-called social investment programme is failing. It is failing not because people do not know what made the previous ones to fail; it is failing because the ones that failed were deliberately compromised, and far from being transparent, and just a conduit for corruption.
When it was operated directly from the Office of the Vice President, people like I raised issues on the way and manner that it was being run; the benchmarks that were being used to dish out the money; the elitists creations involving computers and other stuff. So, most of the people qualified to benefit from the programme did not, and the whole thing was just dark, and lies were coming out of it because there were quite a number of people with media background in the Vice President team.
Second, the lady who was supposed to be running the programme knows nothing about the programme because she never ran one. So, anytime there is a criticism, somebody would be asked to draft a statement, and of course she could not deny because she knows nothing about it.

As a former policy adviser on poverty alleviation to President Olusegun Obasanjo, I am in a position to comment on the SIP and no one can accuse me of not knowing what I am talking about because I helped to design an anti-poverty initiative with the help of Ford Foundation, the UNDP and the World Bank.
I recall that as an adviser, the President asked me to get in touch with some ministers regarding what we were putting in place, but all the ministers that I was asked to reach never bothered to reply me till today. But in spite of that, it was when I left the Presidency that I decided to speak about some of those issues. However, I have noticed that this time around, an anti-poverty initiative is being run with so much fanfare and so much lying beyond anything that President Obasanjo could have imagined, and of course, nobody cares to respond, and now we are going through it all over again.
For instance, in my reaction to TraderMoni and others such schemes, I pointed out that the beneficiaries of the system were highly skewed. On what basis were the number of beneficiaries from Rivers and Lagos states (one of the wealthiest states in the country) picked, or were entitled to benefit from TraderMoni in comparison with poor states like Zamfara, or Jigawa or Bauchi, or so many other poor states in the North Central?
So, for me, the whole SIP thing is opaque, and is being run in a manner that is not accountable and transparent. I have no doubt in my mind that if it is still left in the hands of those that managed it in the Office of the Vice President, it would surely fail despite being taken away to the new Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development.

So, whatever happens, we must first of all find out what happened to the previous money allocated and how they were disbursed for us to arrive at where we are today. But I must also warn that the managers have to be careful because they cannot cheat all the people, all the time.
Before the 2019 election, TraderMoni was being used as campaign tool, and many saw it as a variant of corruption. Could it have been administered the way it was without transparency concerns?
First and foremost, the idea, and the principle behind interventions like TraderMoni are not indigenous to Nigeria as they are also carried out in other parts of the world. However, in those climes, they are carefully designed, manned and implemented by honest people, who also make use of reliable statistics to evaluate income level, and come to the conclusion of how each person should have his/her income augmented. You can see clearly that nothing of this sort is being done here. The entire thing is fraud from top to bottom. What was done in the past was fraudulent, and what is being done now is equally fraudulent. Of cause, if we are determined, we can track those who are manipulating the system and benefitting from it, as well as using their media connections to abuse those that dare to pick holes in their activities.
Having said that, let me add that it is shocking for the Special Adviser to the President on Social Investments, Mrs. Maryam Uwais, to say that everything is okay. From the start, this woman had nothing to do with Buhari. In fact her husband was abusive of Buhari even in court when he was the Chief Justice of the Federation. For her to now land this kind of plum job shows that there is something fishy. Even in the All Progressives Congress (APC), some stakeholders were shouting that they have not been fairly treated, when an opponent, who openly abused the President when he contested election in the past is now one of the major beneficiaries of the government. This clearly shows that it was not party loyalty that gave her the job, neither was it rational consideration.
But you know that at a point, crisis engulfed this programme when it was still in the VP’s office, could that have led to its being unable to deliver on its objectives
Those who ran this programme before failed. And after the programme was transferred out of the Office of the Vice President, they nearly created another crisis that the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo was being sidelined; that it was only his people that were somehow being hounded. But I ask, what did those surrounding Osinbajo do when they were in charge of the SIP? Mind you, we have not all forgotten what happened before. However, what has happened shows you that they have no regard for accountability, and no respect for transparency. They believe that they can blackmail the government of Buhari, or anybody else to continue running things as they like.


But Uwais recently accused some members of the National Assembly of attempting to compromise the SIP register. What do you make of that allegation?


What ever is said about the current National Assembly is not my cup of tea; I can’t stand them. Nobody has conclusively and comprehensively put up any defense on how the National Assembly was trying to involve itself with the implementation of the SIP. It is an executive prerogative. Yes, they can ask questions; they can make observations, but they have no right to query the national social register, or the names, which they give for money to be shared to most of which are fake. But whatever embarrassment that the National Assembly earns for itself is deserving because this thing is not the job of the National Assembly, but that of the executive, whom it assigns it to is another matter.

When similar observations were made about the SIP earlier, some members of the national Assembly were summoned by the VP and were given sheets of paper to go and make announcements and abuse those, who criticised the SIP. If this time around they are the ones that are criticising SIP, it shows that something has happened. However, let me state here that some of the people either in the House of Representatives, or in the senate don’t know what they are talking about; they are only prepared to acknowledge good or bad based on their interests. I also need to stress that the current SIP is a failure, and that the issue of members of the National Assembly being accommodated is another matter completely.


In all of these what is the way forward?


I wish I knew. If I knew, perhaps, I would not be lying down in my house in Kano. May be I would be the President, but because I am not, I can only pass comments, and the comment is by and large what has been commented upon by other well-meaning Nigerians; not members of the National Assembly. Those ones have no moral right because when it happened before they kept their mouths shut.


The Wife of the President also condemned the programme. What would you say to that?


Well, if the first lady passes comment the way I am passing, it is well and good, but I will certainly be more concerned if people that are recognised by the constitution come out and make some of these statements because it is within their rights to do so. The position of the First Lady is still a controversial one until it is properly recognised by the constitution… if a comment is right, it must be deemed to be right, if it is wrong it is deemed to be wrong. On the current issue, I believe the first lady has every right to pass a comment like any other Nigerian. I don’t know if the minister or members of the National Assembly, or the former implementers, who were guilty of working with Prof. Osinbajo admit, or refuse to admit or respect the comments of the first lady.

Culled from The Guardian

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