- Category: Latest
- Published on Wednesday, 14 March 2012 11:55
- Written by Emeka Umeagbalasi
Onitsha Nigeria - On Sunday, 11th day of March 2012, the leadership of International Society for Civil Liberties & the Rule of Law- Intersociety, issued a public statement-titled: Reorganization Of The NPF Via Promotion, Posting & Retirement, & Removal Of Roadblocks: The Journey Is Still Far. The statement has
since been published by Saharareporters.Com, Elomba.Com, the Neighborhood.Com and the World Igbo Forum web media via Odera.Com as well as Punch and Leadership Newspapers, etc. We remain eternally grateful to all of them.
As the publication was making the news, headlines, Mr. Peter Obi, Governor, Anambra State of Nigeria, Chairman, Southeast Governors’ Forum & Vice-chairman, Nigeria’s Governors’ Forum, got wind of it publicly, studied it and went to Abuja on Monday, 12th day of March 2012 and took the matter up with the Presidency and the Chairman of the Police Service Commission. The meetings, we understand, ended with firm assurances that the grave anomaly would soon be addressed. On Tuesday, 13th day of March 2012, Governor Peter Obi wrote the leadership of Intersociety, through his SSA, Media & Publicity, Barr Valentine Obienyem, commending our leadership for courageously taking up the important issue dotted with incontrovertible facts and figures. We commend the governor for his prompt intervention on behalf of the Southeast Governors’ Forum, but we strongly advise the Forum not to wait until colossal damages are done before intervening, which may be irremediably belated. However, we commend his sagacious and noble intervention in this particular weighty issue and urge him not to rest on his oars until equitable and distributive justice is ensured.
From what we credibly gathered, there is no proactive force in the Southeast zone that is handy to ensure equity in key appointive allotments especially at the federal level, even though, this is not an excuse to “ostracize” the zone in key security management decisions. It is also a fact that few Southeast sons and daughters in the country’s top security establishments feel alienated and abandoned by their zone’s key political office holders. And where there is any link at all, it will be turned into moneymaking and extortionist ventures under the guise of “lobbying”. This, according to our credible sources, is common among some, if not many toutish and thuggish lawmakers representing the Southeast zone especially at the federal legislative houses. This is, somehow, contrary to what obtains in other zones. In Lagos State, for instance, any CP not approved by key leaders in the State, including, some say, the Oba of Lagos, is not welcomed as the State’s CP. But in the Southeast States, any funny character and rotten quantity can be woken up one morning, posted and accepted as a State CP.
It is truism that a major solution to the age-long targeted massacre of Nigerians particularly the people of Igbo ethnic group of the Southeast Nigeria expressly lies on total abolition of geopolitical imbalances in the country’s security establishments. In other words, the massacres have been sustained over the years through these grave geopolitical imbalances. It is a common logic that when there is geopolitical balance in key security echelons in the country, there is balance of power. And in the periods of crisis, there will be balanced ratios of reactive or responsive policing of the citizens in danger of extermination. It is also a fact that most of the security forces-backed ethno-religious killings in Nigeria are command-originated. But when there is geopolitical equity in the command structures of the country’s security establishments, such barbarous acts get tamed automatically because of the balance of power and force. For instance, if there are 90 CPs and 36 States’ CPs in the NPF, with each of the six geopolitical zones getting 15 and 6 respectively, and 7DIGs and 24 AIGs, with each zone getting, at least, one DIG and 4 AIGs respectively, then balance of power and force as well as geopolitical equity is ensured. This can be replicated in the promotion and posting of Divisional Police Officers and Area Commanders as well as similar top ranks in other security forces like Army, Navy, Air Force, SSS, NIA, Customs, Immigration and NSCDC. This is also what Section 14(3) of the Constitution of Nigeria 1999 as amended, expressly provides and it is our firm demand that it should totally be complied with.
Similarly, the exclusion of women from the recent promotion of senior officers in the Nigeria Police Force is not only condemnable, but also unconstitutional. It is an inexcusable breach of the UN Convention on Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, which Nigeria has ratified. The Federal Government’s commitment to implement the 35% public positional allotments for Nigeria women was also observed in grievous breach. This is so when out of the 7 DIGs promoted, none is a woman; out of 13 AIGs promoted, none is a woman; and out of 61 CPs posted to various top police formations country-wide recently including States’ CPs, only three (Mrs. Chintua Amajor-Onu, Mrs. Dorothy A. Gimba and Mrs. Titilayo M.Busari) are women. Going by the 35% commitment, out of the seven DIGs, at least, 2 ought to be women; out of 13 AIGs, at least, 4 ought to be women; and out of 61 CPs, at least, 20 ought to be women. This is more so when it is an established fact that women joined the Nigeria Police Force since 1955 through the dogged efforts of the then Women’s Party of Nigeria as well as fierce legislative efforts of Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe and his colleagues in the then brief House of Reps. For instance, Mrs. Chintua Amajor-Onu(Southeast), we understand, is a very senior and reputable officer, who has served as CP Ondo and Taraba States before her recent posting to the Intelligence, FIB, Force Headquarters, Abuja. Taraba State, where she last served, is the only Northeast State yet to be hit by Boko-Haram violence, at least for one year she was there, yet she could not be rewarded with a DIG or an AIG position because she is from “a tabooed” geopolitical zone.
Our support for geopolitical equity or justice is total, more so when we derive the support from the Constitution of Nigeria 1999 as amended. Henceforth, any geopolitical zone in Nigeria that is alienated and “ostracized” in the Nigerian Project will attract our express and total support and those liable for such disguised war of annihilation will attract our wrath not minding whose ox is gored. It is our total demand that the relevant authorities including the Nigeria Police Service Commission must address these injustices frontally and inexcusably.
Emeka Umeagbalasi, Chairman, BOT, Intersociety-Nigeria