Governors across the 36 states of the federation have kicked against President Muhammadu Buhari’s recent rejection of state police.
Citing the enormous security challenges facing the country, the governors said the time had come for Nigeria to have a decentralised policing system by allowing the creation of state police.
The governors, who spoke through their top aides on security matters, permanent secretaries and commissioners, declared that the military, the police and other security agencies owned by the federal government were already overwhelmed by the worsening security challenges caused by terrorism, banditry, kidnapping and other crimes.
The governors also said that they were already supporting the federal security agencies with huge resources in terms of logistics and motivation of personnel enough to run their separate entities.
Until the controversy is resolved, the governors said they would concentrate on upgrading their vigilantes, local guards and regional security organisations such as Amotokun in the South West and EbubeAgu in the South East geo-political zones.
President Buhari had during an interview on Channels Television on Thursday said state police was not an option. He said apart from the certainty that governor would abuse such powers, the states do not have what it takes to finance devolution of powers.
In Niger State, Governor Abubakar Sani Bello has repeatedly decried that he has no control over the security agents, thus he cannot give direct command amid the security challenges confronting the state.
Apparently in support of state police, the state government recently announced the harmonisation of the vigilantes in the state into a corps with a unitary commander.