In the light of the persistent herdsmen crisis, the rise of banditry in places like Zamfara, kidnapping and general state of insecurity across Nigeria, an increasing number of people are beginning to ask if the creation of state police will help in tackling the security challenges facing the country.
There’s a strong belief among many Nigerians that the country needs to have an effective security reform beyond what we currently have if the possibility of solving the security issues are to be realized. The creation of state police has been on the front burner of the citizens’ demand for better security, but the government has held back from taking that option.
The idea is that if the police is created and controlled by each state, it will be easier to build efficiencies in dealing with security challenges instead of waiting for an order from a central headquarter in Abuja who do not fully understand the situation on ground.
The central police has tried within its power, and somewhat unsuccessful in an attempt to tackle the security challenges across the country. But with the creation of state police, there’s a chance of having a cohesive force that can take decisive action against crimes in each state.
But if this agenda was to be pursued, it will require the National Assembly to amend the constitution in order to decentralize the Nigeria Police Force and create a new framework that will establish autonomous police units across 36 states of the federation and the FCT. This would mean that the cost of running the agency will be transferred to the state governments and there’s a strong indication that many states may not be able to foot the bill.
However, if it is properly done, with the federal government contributing to the operation through a security fund, then the creation of state police will hopefully reduce crime to a large extent than what is attainable today.
As it stands right now, aside the insecurity that brought Nigeria to its knees at the high point of Boko Haram insurgency in the North and militant attacks in the South, which have significantly reduced, the level of crimes in Nigeria has continued to grow over the years with no avail.
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