By Victor ‘Tunde Oso
The National Coalition of Niger Delta Ex-Agitators, NCNDE-A has challenged security chiefs in the country to carry the country’s youth along in their fight against heinous crimes.
The Coalition through its National President, Eshanekpe Israel, a.k.a Akpodoro made this known in a telephone interview with our correspondent, Thursday, even as he noted that the conventional security operatives alone cannot fight and win the war against insurgency, armed banditry, kidnapping and other heinous crimes threatening the national security architecture.
Akpodoro, who spoke on the heels of a statement by the Director of Army, Civil Relationship, General John Eneche, who recently called for information from the civil population to enhance the performance and service delivery by the military, said, the army should show better commitment by favourably engaging the youths in fight against violent crimes, be honest and ready to expend the national security budget to achieve result.
Akpodoro pointed out that the security chiefs should engage the indigenous youth in their intelligence gathering for the war against crimes to be won, saying a community-based security apparatus will be more effective than having only the conventional operatives who are not based in the environment to handle security situations.
He berated the army for security failures in some instances, saying they fail because of attitude of reneging on promises made to those not only give them information but were directly engaged in some dangerous operations with them only to turn them down in their quest for fulfilment of agreements earlier reached.
According to the Urhobo-born former warlord; “I had in the past led my teaming followers into giving assistance to the army in the past, which ultimately crippled the renewed insurgency in the Niger Delta region where most of my boys were exposed to dangers occasioned by attacks from the people after successful exercise.”
He alleged that the army refused to fulfill all the agreements the Coalition earlier reached with them which includes: engaging the youths in in waterways security, giving them the job to protect the old and gas pipelines, pay them for the job delivery and others.
Akpodoro called on the Nigerian military to be more upright in the engagement of community youth saying except the security agencies change from their “treacherous style,” it may be difficult for Nigerians to stick out their necks for them because apart from the risks involved they will be severely disappointed noting that the military should realise that information is expensive and should be ready to expend the nation’s security budget, rather than keep in private pockets.
Locals, Akpodoro said, could do much better in the war against armed hostilities but it behoves on the operatives of the security apparatus to be sincere in their operations.