Nigeria can't move forward without adequate funding of security agencies ― Gershom
Senator Gershom Bassey

…any other protest must be within the ambit of law

By Ike Uchechukwu

The Senator representing Cross River South Senatorial district, Senator Gershom Bassey has asserted that Nigeria can’t move forward as a nation unless we adequately fund the country’s security agencies.

Gershom who made the assertion at the weekend while interacting with journalists said the area of security in Nigeria must be properly funded if we must move forward.

His words:” I think there is one area that we must address as a responsible national if we want to go forward in securing our nation whether it is against external security from external aggression or criminality within our nation. I think that is the issue of funding and budgeting.

“Recently I have interacted with lots of security agencies because of the happenings in my state and it has become very clear to me that a lot of our security agencies are not adequately funded.

“This is an area that we as senate and National Assembly can look into. I know that we have the police trust fund and others but it still appears that we do not have enough funding particularly for our security agencies I do not want to go into details”.

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“I think one thing we have to put together may be a committee or a standing committee to look into the adequate funding of these agencies so that they can meet up with the pressure we put on them,” he said .

Speaking further, he disclosed that the second area that needs urgent attention was recruitment of sufficient personnel into security agencies.

Bassey also charged the National Assembly to look into the issue of funding of the security agencies particularly the internal security agencies.

He said: “The second issue is the issue of recruitment of sufficient personnel. We know that there is a problem at the moment with police recruitment but we need to have adequate funding in order to meet up with the pressure we put on our agencies.

“We are under policed and under secured and it is very clear that if we do not have enough security agents to secure the population then you do not have security and you will have security issues , if you do not have enough equipment to secure our population then you will have security issues,” he said.

Speaking on the second EndSARS protest, he warned that whatever they do they should operate within the ambits of the law.

“The EndSARS ( first protest ) when they started at the beginning, was welcomed because we believed that it was the constitutional right of Nigerians to voice their opinion.

“But what happened was that the EndSARS protesters somehow lost control of the peaceful dimension of that movement and I think that is what is creating the so-called skepticism and apprehension about the second protest,” he said.

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