By Omeiza Ajayi, ABUJA
Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola has said in order to overcome some of the challenges militating against the optimal provision of internal security in the country, his ministry has resolved to seek an amendment of the Police Trust Fund Act to encompass other internal security agencies in the country.
Aregbesola disclosed this Friday in Abuja when he received participants of the Senior Executive Course 43 of the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPPS), Kuru, near Jos.
According to a statement issued on behalf of the Director Press in the ministry and signed by Towoju Raphael, the minister explained that the Police Trust Fund Act holds so many potentials in resolving most of the security challenges in Nigeria.
He added that the objective of the Act which was recently signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari came into force on the 24th of June, 2019 and was to provide a legal framework for the Management and control of a special intervention fund for training and retraining of personnel of the Nigeria Police Force and also for the provision of state-of-the-art security equipment and other related facilities for the enhancement of skills of personnel of the Nigeria Police Force.
The Minister urged participants of the Senior Executive Course 43, to support the initiative to include the Ministry of Interior which has the mandate of providing internal security for all in the Trust Fund.
According to Aregbesola, it would be an overkill for the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps NSCDC, Nigeria Correctional Service NCoS, the Federal Fire Service FFS and Nigeria Immigration Service NIS which are key actors in providing internal security, to create separate Trust Funds of their own to be able to effectively achieve the Ministry’s mandate.
“We would be presenting a memo on this to the Federal Executive Council. The objective is to make available other sources of funding to the paramilitary agencies under the Ministry to meet their needs beyond the limited allocation in the Appropriation Bill,” he stressed.
The Minister disclosed the resolve of the ministry and its agencies on strengthening the NSCDC to reposition it to become an Elite Corps that will ensure internal security.
Aregbesola hinted that a manpower audit of officers and men of the corps to carry out this task is being put in place to identify gaps both in number, skills and competence.
“This will no doubt enhance internal security, public safety and citizenship integrity driven by innovation, people, technology and systems, in addition to robust collaboration with critical stakeholders.
“I humbly solicit the support of your Institute in the execution of the various policy reforms of the Ministry which will better position it and its agencies to achieve the provision of security for all citizens. We also require your support in conceptualizing for the Federal Government the need for the full release of budgetary appropriation on internal security matters, especially at this critical time of national security emergency,” Aregbesola reiterated.
In his remarks, the leader of the delegation, Dr Emmanuel Sambo Mamman, mni, said the visit by his team to the Ministry has further broadened their knowledge on the performance of the Ministry, adding that it will help the institute in policy formulation for the benefit of the country.