OBA EWUARE II on insecurity

Traditions of the Land: A Credible means of curbing insecurity.

[09:59, 10/11/2017] Moderator: Good morning comrades, thanks for joining us at the talk-am platform, a place where you share your views and thoughts as well as proffer solutions to some of the problems and challenges confronting our country Nigeria. It’s another beautiful Thursday morning, my name is Hon. OBOBHAGBA .S. ILUOBE and I am glad to anchor today’s segment of our 24hrs debate on Insecurity.

BACKGROUND: The killings and kidnappings in Edo State, particularly the State capital, Benin City in the last two months, is creating tension. The situation is so scary that night life is dead in the state capital. Armed robbers operate freely; over 25 persons have been killed by armed bandits in Benin City.

The Director and Chief Executive of the Ogba Zoo and Nature Park, Dr. Andy Ehanire, was abducted by gunmen. Ehanire is the brother to the Minister of State for Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire. Sadly in that operation, three policemen were killed by the gunmen who also carted away their arms and ammunition.

Ace musician, Osayomore Joseph, seized by suspected kidnappers while his wife was shot, he is also still missing. And barely 48 hours after Joseph was abducted, a lecturer at the University of Benin (UNIBEN), Prof Paul Otasowie, was shot dead by unknown assailants. Meanwhile, residents are worried about the seeming poor response of the police to the situation.

Though the State Police Commissioner, Haliru Gwandu, continues to reiterate his commitment to fighting crime in Edo, many people believe that with the current situation, his efforts are not enough. Governor  Obaseki, who was frustrated by the upsurge in crime in the state, actually travelled to Abuja to discuss the security situation with the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, and the Presidency after he sensed a plot to scare investors away from Edo.

One of the key issues raised by the governor during the Abuja visit was that the Police Service Commission had in July approved the redeployment of four Commissioners of Police in four states including that of Edo, who was replaced by Johnson Kokumo, the Commissioner of Police Armament.

The governor, who reportedly wondered why the change had not been effected, was said to have lamented that it was disrupting his plan to ensure security for the people of the state.

QUESTION:   See  Moderator’s Thoughts

  1. The security situation in our country, which way out? (Because the Edo issue affects the whole nation) 2. Why is the State Commissioner refusing to leave the State?

CAUTION: No foul language, attack the issue but not personality, be brief and straight to the point, others are entitled to their views and opinions and may the most articulate men and women school us.

God bless the federal republic of Nigeria

God bless talk-am crew.

[11:05, 10/11/2017] Ibaba: Good morning everyone, Mr. Moderator good morning.

Security like we keep sounding on this platform is threat to human lives and property and in a commercial state such as Edo State, if the security of citizens is not guaranteed then business cannot strive just like you sounded, but I think the governor running to Abuja to give security report is good but to some extent is uncalled for. A governor is the chief security officer in his state which every commissioner serving under his environ is answerable to, so if the lives of citizens are not protected and kidnapping have become the order of the day, must Mr. Obaseki run to Abuja before he can protect his people?

Why not call the police and other security agents who are answerable to him to tender a “way forward” security report to him instead of running to Abuja, and if the federal government now decide to send another military operation Python Dance in Edo state, we will still be complaining that the military are oppressing and intimidating poor citizens, whereas the governor made it known to the federal government that the situation is beyond his control.

The totality of it is that, we have governors who cannot take decisions on their own and be firm as executive officer in their respective states, as chief security officers simply because they don’t want to offend the powers that be.

[11:30, 10/11/2017] Dave: Yes members of the house, it is an opportunity to have your audience again, in this very sensitive topic of the nation’s insecurity. I do want to commend the wisdom of the moderator to have come up with a question in this direction at this point in time. My honorable members, I will want you to understand that, this issue of insecurity is issue of every state in Nigeria however, the situation may not be the same in every state.

Just as the moderator’s account is of Edo State targeting to cripple the State’s economic activities, I will want to professionally see this insecurity as being peculiar to the type of problems that are found in every state. For example the problem in Edo State is not far from rival political groups of the two mega parties found in that place. When criminality is being carried out with that sense of impunity and Government agencies not being adequately able to control the situation then, it just means there may be a conspiracy somewhere within the law enforcement agents and their agencies.

Remember that State governorship election was won with the influence of a very powerful business mogul, and the aim of his investment was to have a turnaround of series investments in that State. And the antagonists may not want them to achieve that just to discredit them. Therefore, it is the duty of the State Governor not to leave no stone unturned , by being ahead of his opponent and the conspired security agents there to do what he promised the people,  which securing of their lives and property is the top in priority.

Another angle of it can also be seen from the angle of the general insecurity of criminals stepping up in their hunting of bigger sums of money from successful businessmen and political thieves who may have looted our funds.

[11:38, 10/11/2017] Odey: Morning comrades. In my submission, the answer to the security situation in Edo or any other State in Nigeria  for that matter is far from seeking a quick fixed arrangement. All we are experiencing either in the form of agitation, militancy, kidnapping, prostitution or others, are resultant of institutional failure.

Man is born with survival instincts and must do whatever to continue to exist. What do you make of a young man whom the family sold all they had to ensure he is educated and at the end of the day can’t find a reasonable means of living just because he is not known by those at the corridors of power? On a daily basis he sees those who can’t match his performance wallowing in affluence as a result of brazing corruption. While I am not holding brief for vices, some of the ills in the society are poverty related.

In proffering solutions to the aforementioned problems, citizens aspiring to any position of authority should do so on the basis of service rather than personal aggrandizement, we should see our country as a project that needs our collective efforts, political thuggery should be discouraged and confronted as it has over the years proven to be counterproductive:

It has led to proliferation of arms due to the inability of their pay masters to carry out proper mop up after intended exercise.

Deliberate programmes should be developed geared towards engaging the youths productively. Cultism should be dealt with as it has constituted a breeding ground for the societal menace that plague our dear nation.

God bless this platform, God bless Nigeria.

[11:42, 10/11/2017] Moderator: Good morning Mr. Ibaba, thanks for joining us. The reason I think the governor ran to the presidency in Abuja is to seek help, and because the police in the State are not doing anything to tackle the situation. If u were the governor, what would you have done?

[11:52, 10/11/2017] Ibaba: Summon the commissioner of police and other security heads to account for security challenges in my State, and if it is beyond his or her own control then I will bring the IGP in,

[11:53, 10/11/2017] Moderator: Thank u so much Mark Dave, as you said in your write-up, the bane in Edo state is not far from rival political groups of the two parties in the state. I agree with you completely, Even at that, security is supposed to be the ultimate objective of any government, but since the state is witnessing this plague, what steps will you advice to be taken?

[12:00, 10/11/2017] Moderator: Well said Mr. Ibaba and good, you think the governor has not done that? The police in the state are either confused, or are being handicapped to fight the criminals.

[12:00, 10/11/2017] Ibaba: We can’t keep blaming the government that our parents have invested so much in us by sending us to school and at the end there is no job so we should indulge in such act, on your own what have you done to help the society or to get something for yourself, we can’t all be waiting for white collar jobs because government can’t employ everybody.

Most of those guys who indulge in such act are not even educated to start with and even if they are maybe they passed through school but the school didn’t passed through them, because like myself I value my life and I know how much I suffered to be out of illiteracy, so how much will you pay me to indulge in crime that I will be satisfied?

@Mr. Moderator, So why is the Commissioner of Police (CP) not leaving the State, what are his reasons?

[12:05, 10/11/2017] Moderator: Something is wrong somewhere, It may interest you to know that, few days ago, protests were held at the National Assembly and force Headquarters concerning this same issue. The people want to know why the CP is not leaving after being transferred.

[12:11, 10/11/2017] Ibaba: @Mr. Moderator, some of those guys perpetrating these evil are used during campaign by the politicians promising them heaven and earth just to wade into power and after seizing the power they make themselves inaccessible to the same manipulated class who were assassinating and killing their political opponents and the thugs will have no choice than to use those weapons that were acquired during campaign to indulge in kidnapping and other criminal activities.

Mr. Moderator a lot of things are wrong with our institutions just like what Mr. Odey said, I see no reason why in this situation the people should boycott the State House of Assembly and come to National Assembly to protest, what for?

The functions of the lawmakers is one of oversight, make laws, since the Commissioner of Police is resisting transfer did the Edo State House of Assembly summon him for once? Why the protest in Abuja and not in the Edo assembly?

You see State House of Assemblies have become rubber stamp to Executives and that is why most times they lack the moral ground to take some certain decisions just because they want it always in the interest of the seating governor and that is bastardizing the polity every now and day.

[12:13, 10/11/2017] Dave: As I was building a point on the stepping up of criminals in their modern form of criminality. Some States are bound to be ahead of others in quest of making this money criminally. What do I mean? The behaviors of some ethnic groups are higher than others. And if what I see in the Nooly wood movies about Warri and other places in Edo State’s ways of life, about everybody being a  fast guy hence, the slogans of “warri no dey take last” then even the activities of the criminals in that place will be ahead of others. Wherefore security must be the biggest challenge of the sitting governor. His vigilantes groups must be equipped to their teeth.

It is logical from this school of thoughts to be the root cause of the Edo model of crime that is targeting to cripple the economic activities of the state, and the reasons of the State CP not wanting to go to his new place of posting. And in my own speculation, it may be due to some bureaucratic reasons.

It could also be due to some heavy conspiracy from above just to achieve what is needed by the powers that be and he happens to be the best officer for the task. It could also be due to his level of participations in the ugly monster that is destroying the normal pace of the country’s growth and development. However, his boss the Inspector General (IG) is at the center of this drama (the CP still remaining where he is). The situation may be more than what meets the eyes. Therefore it is a smart thing the Governor has done coming to see the IG.

[12:45, 10/11/2017] Moderator: @Mr. Ibaba True, why will youths allow themselves to be used to perpetrate Evil, on the side of the politicians, why didn’t they use their children or relatives? I cry for our youths. But thank God for the new generation youths that stands against Evil.  And I bless God for talk-am platform for standing in the gap for us all.

Also, Is it not the same House of Assembly that impeached the speaker not too long ago, and the house is in different party fights while their major objectives is left unattended to, why wont the people, civil society and NGO’s boycott them and take their grievances to the National Assembly?

[12:54, 10/11/2017] Dave: apologies Mr. Moderator for not responding to your question on time. If I am the State Governor, I will first of all looks for the services of some private detectives to employ them informally to scout out the motives and the people behind this conspiracy, then equipped and train the local vigilante as mentioned earlier.

[13:00, 10/11/2017] Moderator: That’s a very great step.  Bravo. Let’s not forget to share ideas on question no 2.

[13:04, 10/11/2017] Ibaba: @Mr. Dave, in this part of the world where nobody especially from the opposition party seems not to see anything good from a sitting government, will you not use your well-equipped local vigilante and secrete detectives as a witch-hunt to your political enemies?

[13:06, 10/11/2017] Eze: Stupidity and greed are the causes of crime, we like to blame government for not providing jobs whereas we on our own can acquire skills that can give us jobs.

[13:08, 10/11/2017] Moderator: Fellow Comrades, I just took time to look into States in Nigeria, the security issues has eaten deep in the country. Believe it or not nowhere is safe anymore..

Welcome on board Mr. Eze, there is no country in the world where there is no crime, but ours is too glaring, there ought to be mechanisms in place to arrest any menace of crime in the country, but what are they (Government) doing?

[13:15, 10/11/2017] Dave: And what is wrong on doing that if they are the enemies of my governance. If they are innocent of the problems why I should witch hunt them? Didn’t I already beat them in the polls to become the Governor? Mr. Ibaba please come on in a different angle.

[13:15, 10/11/2017] Eze: @Mr. Moderator, Well it’s to take decisive actions concerning crime, sit with your security apparatus and issue stringent orders. Also find means that people can express themselves, local events can inspire a lot of things, like sports events, Boxing, wrestling, football etc.

Since our Governors are not business savvies I would have said there are ways that these events can generate cash and sponsorship of their own. We don’t know how to harness what we have for productivity, and governors should take it as a persona non grata on crime. Amaechi did it in Rivers State, took his time and hunted the militants in the state with the security apparatus he had. If the criminals see the State Government is serious on crime trust me crime rate will reduce. It’s like every other issue in Nigeria, give it the seriousness it deserves and it will be solved.

[13:22, 10/11/2017] Chigozie: Good day Comrades, nice one Mr. Moderator,  the level of insecurity in this country is becoming alarming and if nothing is done urgently we will all perish.

Security which is the protection and preservation of information or life and property is no more obtainable in our dear country, there is no week that passes without the news of kidnappings across the country, this attest to the facts that our security agencies are short of the modern technologies and initiatives needed to combat crime. Sometimes I doubt if the willingness on the part of our security agencies is there, because the average security man on the street is not properly motivated and equipped

In the world today, matters of National security are of utmost importance to the progress and development of the polity. As a result, no nation can afford to treat with levity any issue that threatens its national security. National security in any nation can be likened to the central nervous system in the human body. If anything goes wrong with it every other aspect of the nation will be adversely affected, whether directly or indirectly.

[13:34, 10/11/2017] Eghosa: According to Karl Marx- The production of too many useful things results in too many Useless people! Causes of Insecurity can be traced down to:

Dysfunctional homes, unemployment etc. An idle mind, they say is the devil’s workshop.

Our youths needs to be engage to be self-productive, government should create the enabling environment for them, access to long-term loan is very necessary.

[13:56, 10/11/2017] Moderator: Thank you very much @Chigozie, now that we all know the security situation in the counrty, what solutions will you suggest that will help?

. Welcome on board @Madam Eghosa, All these points you just highlighted are good ones. But let me add to this, that our government has failed us; all we need do now is self-reorientation, engaging in one skill or the other etc.

[14:02, 10/11/2017] Eze: How can they give you loan when they don’t have any creative ideas that can turn the loan to profit?

[14:09, 10/11/2017] Chigozie: The way out of this present security situation is an overhauling of the security system, state policing will go a long way in minimizing crime in our society,  because no one knows the society more than its indigenes, being members also of the same society and knowing that their parents and loved ones are involved,  will motivate the men of the police force to fight relentlessly  without compromise.

At the center of it all is the rate of unemployment in Nigeria, every year about 250,000- 400,000 Nigerian youth pass through the NYSC and one needs to ask, how many job do we create in a year, inasmuch as unemployment does not justify crime, but a hungry man is not only an angry man but a desperate man, and a desperate man can do anything, we have the resources to create millions of jobs but our leaders lacks vision and ideas

Thirdly we all have an important role to play in the security of our society as enshrined in the duties of the citizens towards the state by providing useful information to the security agencies, there is no society that does not know those perpetrating most these crimes, but most times we choose to protect them

Lastly Politics; It is therefore important to emphasize that he major negative factors that have prevented development and stability in our Political dispensation is politics of bitterness, sometimes I wonder, is politics meant to eradicate integrity and love for one another?

Politicians need to understand and appreciate the ethics of politics and true meaning of politics, the fact that you lost your presidential, Governorship or Senatorial position should not make you to develop hatred and bitterness towards your opponents and the state, most times our politicians creates these social vices in the society,  either to make the State  ungovernable for the man that has the mandate of the people or for their own selfish interest and gains.

[14:11, 10/11/2017] Eghosa: @Mr. Eze government can give loans when you have workable business plans, but the political elites and bureaucrats won’t let it trickle down.

[14:15, 10/11/2017] Eze: Every year Americans, Europeans graduate from school, how many wait for government to provide jobs for them? They are employed by private ventures that have come to be through innovation and creativity. Government can’t employ all, the best it can do is create enabling environment for your creativity to thrive.

All the graduates can’t they even from the 4 years of learning, acquire a skill that can create jobs for them? We all like government jobs forgetting in us there is a business conglomerate lying fallow. Insecurity can be tackled by the will power of the State and a good strategy from the security apparatus available to every State.

Sometimes the insecurity is state inflicted, by politicians buying guns to win election and not wanting to be exposed so they leave the weapons in the hands of the people who were given such weapons.

[15:58, 10/11/2017] Moderator: Weldon comrades, It may interest you to know that the Oba of Benin kingdom has held a meeting with his chiefs that they should employ the traditional way in tackling security problems in the State. This comes into play because the police in the State has failed, the government has failed too. Is this a right move from the traditional rulers?

[16:37, 10/11/2017] Dave: Of course yes. It is a wise option if government can empower the traditional rulers in the constitution to have some veto powers to prosecute criminals in the traditional ways and practice. It will improve the security of the nation.

[18:29, 10/11/2017] Ibaba: A very good move in the right direction that is how it was before the Europeans came, traditional rulers play a very Vital role in the society and nation building but they have sold their rights and positions for political peanuts. They are partisan now as such we have lost confident in them, the totality of the issue is this, the perpetrators are our people we know them but why are we shielding them, because someone cannot come from Ghana to commit crime in Edo State without traces from the Indigene who know in totality about the State and every other place in Nigeria. So if the Oba with his council of Chiefs in their own discretion can find a way of managing this, so that peace can be maintained and investors both local and foreign will come in for their businesses, then applause for the Oba he should go ahead is a welcome development.

[18:31, 10/11/2017] Dave: In a political science lecture I was told of this story about the Royal Fathers influence on their people. And he gave us the story of General Mohammadu Buhari regime and their War Against Indiscipline (WAI) with the famous Emir of Adamawa, the Lamido of Adamawa, whose palace guards refused to promote the WAI policy of the Buhari on the people simply because the order did not come from the prominent Emir, the Lamido but from a son of nobody like Buhari.

They were seriously working against the government policy by forbidding women from cleaning their houses and environments because the order is not from their respected Lamido .Then the Emir called them and used wisdom by telling them that Buhari has send message to him, praising him of his good leadership on the people of Adamawa. And that he want the Emir and his council of chiefs to help him enforce this policy of the WAI. And immediately they became happy and started enforcing the policy on everybody to keep his environment clean. And that they will wake up from 5 am in the morning waking up people from house to house to start the cleaning. And any compound they found not being clean before the sun rise, they will drag the people to the enforcement agents or the Emir palace.

This is how powerful the traditional sit of power can be to some folks, especially the masses in the rural areas. Every man’s son and daughter is known by the people and they can fetch one out if being needed by the authority of the Royal Father.

But it is very unfortunate that the government has not understood the power and influence these Royal Fathers has on the people within their domains. Surely government will get it easy in curtailing some aspects of crime if they do something to increase the authority and powers of the traditional rulers.

[18:49, 10/11/2017] Moderator:

Furthermore, the Oba of Benin noted that community leaders, including Enogies, Chiefs, Priests, Odionweres and other stakeholders, must develop a clear blueprint that could offer a lasting solution to the menace.

Speaking through the Traditional Prime Minister and Iyase of Benin kingdom, Chief Sam Igbe, the Monarch condemned the increasing cases of kidnapping, armed robbery and other social vices in the State. According to Oba Ewuare ll, collective efforts were key to curbing the unwholesome trend.

He therefore stated that all traditional rulers and Chiefs in the State must brace up to the challenge through traditional means to tackle the upsurge in cases of violent crimes in the State.

[18:58, 10/11/2017] Dave: A very brilliant act of wisdom from the Oba of Benin Empire. Mark it and see if all the stakeholders comply to the order of the Royal Highness, Oba Ewuare II, there will be a tremendous improvement in the security of the State, than in the hands of the governor.

[10:15, 10/12/2017] Moderators: Good morning Comrades, I want to say a very big thank you to all of you for an insightful debate on insecurity yesterday. I salute the talk-am crew, moderators and members of this great platform. I love you all.See  Moderator’s Thoughts

Do you feel differently about our views, please use the comment box below.

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