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The Nigeria Police planned partnership with the Telecoms operators to combat Crime a Welcome development, but...




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While insurgency, insecurity, violence and break down of law and order especially of late from the proscribed Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN), hang threatening in the air, you cannot agree less that the reported partnership between the Nigeria Police Force with the Association of Licensed Telecoms Operators of Nigeria (ALTON) which will enable the former to install CCTV Cameras on their Telecoms Masts nationwide is a welcome development.

But for an institution with the lowest ratings when it comes to Nigeria's public institutions' corruption index, I'm not too sure this wouldn't be one of those projects that are dead on arrival.

Well. You might want to say am I not being too pre-emptively negative or hasty with my summation on the chances of the Nigeria Police Force succeeding in their new adventure. And I'll tell you that I'm not.

The truth is I actually don't have the natural inclinations to hate or speak ill of people (known or unknown) and more so of institutions until they make it pretty difficult for me.

The Nigeria Police that I know having been a scapegoat of its corrupted rules of engagement myself stand no chance with me when it comes to conversations around the activities of some of its men and officers. Many of them won't just make the cut for me.

Their case is the reverse of the Yoruba saying that "Sometimes it takes one bad slave to rubbish a thousand slaves".

I'm speaking from the standpoint of the police being the 'slave custodian' of our onerous national security task.

After all, when one is sent on the slave's errands, the expectation is that one should execute the assignments like a (freeborn). But with the Nigeria Police, this has not always been the case.

Here, however, I want to cut them some slacks. The credit for this magical if not for me an engrossing initiative of the police authorities to partner with the telecom operators once more go to its highly innovative new sheriff IGP Mohammed Adamu.

And it is one of the many proactive measures from the Police Chief in his quest to tackle headlong the rising waves of insecurity in the country since assuming office.

When modalities for the takeoff are sorted out, the pilot phase is set to commence in the nation's capital, Abuja and its environments whose residents are not really new to such a lofty social security intervention.

Afterward, it will be implemented in other major cities in Nigeria.

The benefits of such an ambitious plan are multi-faced when fully carried out and if properly done.

One, it will ensure the receiving by the designated police control rooms of signal in real-time on the security situations in the covered beats.

And so if you belong in the cohort of perpetual optimists you can afford to say the days of criminal elements in our society are numbered because police response will be prompt.

And that the aftermath in terms of arrest, investigation, and prosecution will be thorough giving no rooms for slip-ups

Again, it will help to protect the telecom installations themselves which over the years have been subjected to repeated rape by some unscrupulous elements in the society.

Government agencies and institutions are also not left out of this rape of their rights to exist as corporate citizens through incessant but unwarranted closing down of telecoms sites.

This too will stop as soon as the facilities are deployed because police authorities cannot afford a disruption to the flow of signal from the devices which of course must be round the clock.

As such, one can say the security of the masts as well as the installed CCTV Cameras will be guaranteed.

Another positive from the reports of this partnership when it eventually materialized is that political authorities can indeed achieve a lot with the telecom sector if political and bureaucratic bottlenecks are removed.

Two strategic areas that people have often mentioned are the national identification scheme and Census because the network providers have the capacity to assist the government in centralizing the systems for effective national planning.

But successive governments have not been able to summon the political will to go the whole hog with collaborations in these directions that would have revolutionized the nation's identification crisis and the likes.

Like I hinted earlier, this will not be the first time the government, especially at the federal level, is embarking on the installation of CCTV Cameras for the prevention of crime and criminality.

However, it has always not turned out the way it was planned.

The most recent was made during the Goodluck Jonathan’s administration. And it actually installed CCTV Cameras around the Abuja metropolis.

But they have just refused to work contrary to expectations of the people. Surprisingly, no explanation so far has been given for its failure.

This means, perhaps, Billions in hard currency gone down the drain.

So, to ensure this laudable initiative of the police did not go the way of the growing lists of white elephant projects in the country due diligence must be followed by the concerned stakeholders especially the government.

And for a government which prides itself with fighting corruption, nothing short of excellent delivery will be acceptable.

Despite my fears about it success especially as regards maintenance, since it is a public-private initiative I wouldn't mind giving the implementers the benefits of the doubts at least in the short and medium terms

But long term a lot need to be put in place to ensure sustainability possibly with legislation to back it up.

Otherwise, it might end up like it cousins across the length and breadth of the country which might interest the readers are on the radar of the lower chamber of the national assembly for a probe.

Even though there're multiple sides to the problem of insecurity in the country like banditry, cattle rustling, criminal herders, one-chance, kidnapping, and their legendary colleagues like armed-robbery and cultism, the Nigeria Police under IGP Mohammed Adamu is soldiering on.

So I want to salute the present leadership of Nigeria Police Force for its resolute commitment to combating the flaring surge of social vices in Nigeria.


Above all speed, I think should be giving to this new initiative to fast track the process of urgent decriminalization of the country for accelerated socio-economic development of the country.



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