Notable socio-political groups in the South-East have decried the security challenges in the axis, even as they proffered solutions and suggested ways of bringing peace to the area.
The groups include the Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, Association of South East Town Unions (ASETU), the Cultural Credibility Development Initiative (CCDI) and the Indigenous Igbo Youth Congress (IIYC).
Publicity Secretary of Ohanaeze, Alex Ogbonnaya, identified three levels to achieving efficient security, adding that the security outfit of the Federal Government was not enough.
“There is the need for the states to complement the one at the federal level to create and domesticate security consciousness among the people. You may call it Ebubeagu or any other nomenclature for that mater. It is no longer possible to believe that the federal police or armed forces will be able to maintain peace and security as we envisaged in the South-East or any part of the country.
“We had called on the South-East governors to come up with a central security command for the whole of the South-East. Each state will have its own outfit. Each security outfit has to be domesticated that every community will have men in the outfit, who should be known by the people in the community, traditional rulers, and others, in order to make sure we have credible persons in the security architecture.”
National President of ASETU, Chief Emeka Diwe noted that the insecurity in South East seemed to have overwhelmed the security agencies. According to him, except there is a restructuring of Nigeria security architecture, the security system will continue to remain in question.
“We, as town unions are sure that except we align security to our own home grown security system, we may not get it right. Security is local and must be seen as such. We have already existing security apparatus build in an organised structure known as Igbo Town Union. Anywhere there is a town union; there is an existing security apparatus.
“If you observe, you will discover that the AK 47 wielding Fulani herdsmen are majorly seen in the villages and local communities in the name of grazing.
“The government should partner with National Association of Igbo Town Unions to strengthen the home grown security structure, not by dominating or control them. The partnership should be geared towards providing logistics, further professional security training and other necessities for effective security.
“Today, it is a known fact that South East has four dominant political parties-APC, PDP, APGA and recently Labour Party. From experience, we know that those the state governments engaged as state police or members of vigilante groups, are those they have been using in their election as thugs. These people eventually become bandits, kidnappers and criminals if they are no longer being taken care of. So the state security, or state police as currently obtained, by whatever name they are called, cannot salvage insecurity that is currently ravaging the South East and the Igbo speaking nation.” President of CCDI, Chief Goddy Uwazurike, opined that there should be serious efforts at boosting the intelligence network of the genuine security people. According to him, only well trained intelligence operatives should be posted to the South-East. It is only well trained intelligence operatives who will analyse the Monday-Monday movement of the criminals and ambush them, he added.
“The criminals are not many. They are not professionals in handling weapons. Intelligence operatives will locate their bases and catch them unawares. The local criminals and the Fulani syndicated groups can be eliminated in the same way.
“The two groups that are still problematic are the unknown gunmen and the errant law keepers. The unknown gunmen move with impunity and there is hardly confrontation between the unknown gunmen and the security forces.” (Saturday Sun)