…seek ways to combat insecurity, end food shortages

The long-talked-about state police may soon become a reality as President Bola Tinubu and the governors of the 36 states of the federation have begun discussions on the modalities for the setup as a means of beefing up security across the country.

The President met with the governors on Thursday at the State House, Abuja, where the growing level of insecurity in the country and the matter of state police were top of the agenda.

Minister of Information and National Orientation, Mohammed Idris, who briefed State House Correspondents after the meeting, said the meeting acknowledged security improvements nationwide.

He said the meeting decided that state governments should increase the number and activities of forest rangers to improve security for farmers, deepen investments in food production, and do more to get the youth more gainfully employed.

The minister, who was joined at the briefing by Governors Caleb Mutfwang (Plateau), Ubah Sani (Kaduna) and Sheriff Oborevwori (Delta), said a lot of work needed to be done, the possibility of state police would be further discussed, and that the President and governors had agreed on working out the modalities.

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He noted that both the federal and state governments were mulling the idea, adding that series of meetings were in the pipeline to determine the modalities for the setting up of the state police as nothing concrete had yet been determined.

The minister revealed that a committee had been set up to synthesise all that had been discussed at the meeting.

On food security, the minister said the President had directed the National Security Adviser, the Director General of the Department of State Services and the Inspector General of Police to coordinate with governors to immediately check the activities of those hoarding food commodities in the country with the intention to smuggle them out or make extra profits from the resulting scarcity.

He further said that in contrast with the Federal Government’s previous stance, no food commodities would be imported.

He clarified that in order for the nation to be both self-sufficient and a net exporter, the government hoped to maintain the progress already made in local food production.