The Arewa Youths Consultative Forum (AYCF) has described the recent recommendations by the Presidential Panel on the Reform of Special Anti-robbery Squad for the establishment of state and local government police as being premature.
In a statement on Sunday, President-General of the group, Yerima Shettima, said President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration cannot establish state police, stressing that the country is not ready to operate a state policing system.
He stressed that Nigeria would be ready for state policing when state governments are able to operate independent of the Federal Government.
He said: “I’m an advocate of regional policing and how to reduce power at the centre. We run a system that the centre will always be there to oversee the affairs of the regions. Structural-wise that is how it should be, however, we are not ready for state policing.
“I’m only concerned that the state governors have done a lot of damage to the system for state police to be achieved. Probably after this government, the next one would be able to put the system together. State governments need to have revenue generation without looking at the centre before establishing state police. We have not gotten there yet.
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“We need to have a government that works, we need to have a government with foresight and clear direction of its economic policies and with this they can now come up with state policing. As it is now, it will be impossible for state government to have state policing.”
On the fears about state governors using it for personal vendetta, Shettima said: “Well the Federal government must oversee the affairs of the institution. Government must amend the constitution in such a way that it would supervise the activities of state police to ensure that things are done properly and nobody is above the law.”
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