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State Police Will Kill Nigeria’s Democracy, Claims Ex-VON DG Osita Okechukwu

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State Police Will Kill Nigeria’s Democracy, Claims Ex-VON DG Osita Okechukwu

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The former Director-General of Voice of Nigeria (VON), Mr Osita Okechukwu, has stated that “State Police will kill our nascent democracy”.

Okechukwu, a foundation member of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), disclosed this to newsmen at the weekend in Eke community at the burial of late Chief Bona Udeh, erstwhile Chairman of Udi Local Government Area in Enugu State.

The APC chieftain said that his lack of support for the establishment of State Police was due to his elementary study of the antics of dictatorship.

He stated that the study made him shiver each time he thought of what would happen to democracy if governors who had since inception of fourth republic in 1999, acted like emperors empowered absolutely to kill democracy.

According to him: “What salvation do we earn, when careful consideration gazetted that majority of our dear governors are more or less akin to emperors, who are constantly in the breach of fine democratic tenets and civil liberties.”

The APC chieftain also said the governors had thwarted the local councils since the system had blatantly mangled state judiciary and state legislatures into rubber stamps.

“My dear countrymen, do we in all intents and purposes make altruistic sense to further empower emperors?

Emperors hated alternative views, abhorred popular participation and rule of law throughout the history of man.

“Our dear governors in similar manner abhorred the rule of law and popular participation; this is why they had, in the same bipartisan manner,opposed local government autonomy, independence of state judiciary and state legislatures,” he said.

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Proffering security solution, Okechukwu said as a matter of urgent national importance, at this trying period, the country needed well-trained and well-equipped Special Constabulary Police in line with the Nigeria Police Act 2020.

The APC chieftain said Special Constabulary Police should be equipped with sophisticated arsenal to contain kidnappers, terrorists and insurgents at the grassroots, without authoritarian antics.

He said the Special Constabulary Police he was advocating would be funded by Federal and State Governments, jointly recruited from indigenes of the given state in collaboration with the governors, albeit local community, based on “tiny federal strings”, for necessary moderation.

“I appeal for understanding for Special Constabulary Police as the federal and state governments will better fund the outfit, rather than authorising state governors to transfer the burden of funding to our citizenry, majority of who are trapped in multidimensional poverty.

He said although one understood the metastasis of grief, helplessness, despair, despondency and the sordid scenario of a country overwhelmed by insecurity, it would be less strategic in the midst of confusion to over tax the citizenry.

The Director-General of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum, Mr Asishana Okauru, reported that 16 state governors had earlier supported the establishment of State Police.

They supported floating of the outfit as a panacea for the insecurity ravaging the different parts of the country.

Also, the Senior Special Assistant to the Vice-President on Media and Communication, Mr Stanley Nwakocha, had earlier disclosed in a statement that discussions were held at 140th meeting of the National Economic Council on the matter.

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Nwakocha noted that 16 out of the 36 states had already submitted reports on the State Policing initiative and that the remaining 20 governors were already in the process of submitting theirs

“The official position of the forum is in favour of state police. I don’t know of any state that is not in support of state police,” he said.

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