Breaking: 36 Assembly Speakers Endorse State Police Initiative

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Speakers of State Assemblies Endorse National Assembly’s State Policing Initiative.

In a significant development, the Speakers of the 36 Houses of Assembly across Nigeria have endorsed the ongoing efforts by the National Assembly to incorporate provisions for state policing into the nation’s constitution. This resolution was reached following a meeting held in Abuja on Thursday night.

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The endorsement comes amid ongoing debates about the suitability and readiness of Nigeria for state-controlled police forces. In April, Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Kayode Egbetokun expressed strong reservations about the establishment of state police. Speaking at a national dialogue on state police organized by the House of Representatives in Abuja, Egbetokun, represented by Assistant Inspector-General of Police Ben Okolo, stated that Nigeria is not yet mature enough for state policing.

Egbetokun’s concerns centered on potential abuses by state governors, who might use state-controlled police forces for political or personal gain, thereby undermining human rights and security. He emphasized that this could lead to conflicts of jurisdiction and other governance issues.

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“State governors could use the police forces under their control for political or personal gain and undermine human rights and security. There would also be a conflict of jurisdiction,” he noted.

The theme of the dialogue, ‘Pathways to Peace: Reimagining Policing in Nigeria’, highlighted the complexities and diverse opinions surrounding the issue. Despite the IGP’s stance, the collective decision by the state assembly speakers indicates a strong push for constitutional amendments to enable state policing as a means to enhance local security and governance.

The resolution by the state assembly speakers is seen as a crucial step towards addressing Nigeria’s security challenges through localized control and management of police forces. Proponents argue that state policing would allow for more effective and context-specific responses to security issues, given the diverse nature of Nigeria’s regions.

The National Assembly’s initiative to embed state policing in the constitution reflects a broader effort to reform Nigeria’s security architecture. As this legislative process unfolds, the debates and discussions will continue to shape the future of policing in Nigeria.

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