The governor of Ebonyi State, David Umahi has thrown his weight behind state police, but argues that such a concept has to be well regulated for it to operate in Nigeria.
Speaking during an interview on Wednesday on Arise Tv, he also stated that if state police has to be established in the country, then it has to be controlled by the federal government.
Umahi joined calls for the creation of state policing with adequate regulations in order to tackle the insecurity bedeviling the country.
According to the governor, the issue of security is the responsibility of every Nigerian despite the status of Governors as the Chief Security Officers in their respective states.
Nonetheless, Umahi cautioned that the creation of state police must be under specific regulations due to the hateful nature of Nigerian politics and the tendency to witch-hunt critics and the opposition.
“Security is the job of everyone and the Governor cannot be everyone which is why I support State Police but it has to be regulated.
‘For example, two states share a common boundary and they are in two different parties, it might be a bad look due to the way we play politics in this country filled with hatred against the opposition. There has to be limitations on the powers of the State Police and it must be under the control of the Federal Police,” Umahi said.
He also noted that his visit to President Muhammadu Buhari which culminated in the proclamation of his Presidential ambition was about other issues; insecurity in the South-East being the most important.
“My visit to President Muhammadu Buhari was not just about my ambition; other issues were discussed — the most important being the security situation.”
Umahi also revealed the reason for his defection from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the issue of zoning with respect to fairness in the political system.
He added, “I didn’t say the injustice in PDP was meted against me as a person; I was talking about the role of Southeasterners in the PDP and I think the party had been unfair to the region by not allowing them any chances. It was an unwritten agreement to zone the ticket to PDP; I made inquiries which made me defected.
“I want to be President as a Nigerian who has got the right as any citizen; in APC, the APC has been fairer to the SE when juxtaposing with the sacrifices of the region in the PDP.
“I didn’t decamp from the PDP to fly the flag of APC; I am still a new person in APC and whatever position I get will be considered a favour but looking at it generally by the society for the sake of unity, it is important that equity, fairness and justice are entrenched which should be considered in the zoning arrangement.”
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