President Muhammadu Buhari announced yesterday that the Federal Government has finalized arrangements to re-equip and expand security personnel so as to effectively handle surging insecurity in the country, remarking that the police force continues to be a significant element of security architecture.
Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, who represented Buhari at the commissioning of Police Special Protection Unit Base 6 in Rivers State, admitted that insecurity had presented severe challenges to the growth of the country, emphasizing that without security there would be no development.
Buhari, who spoke during the unveiling of facility built by the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) and named after him for executing the project, which was abandoned 10 years ago, ascertained that his administration would proceed to provide leeway for security agencies to battle crime in Nigeria.
Speaking during the event, Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, chastised the Federal Government for failure to execute projects, saying that the project being commissioned after 10 years of commencement was not a record for any administration.
Furthermore, he conveyed dissatisfaction over the rate at which the NDDC abandons projects, saying that he was on the brink of taking over the project seven months ago when the NDDC got information of his intention and saved the situation by completing the project.
According to him, the NDDC, through the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio, was already defaulting on an N2.5 billion counterpart funding to expand the road to the commission’s headquarters, adding: “If he fails to release the money, I will ensure that the NDDC did not use the road.”
Wike, who declared that his administration would continue to sustain its support for security agencies in the state, commended the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Alkali Baba Usman, for his commitment to ensuring security of life and property in Rivers State.
The governor remarked that the prevailing peace in Rivers State was as a result of the IGP’s apolitical disposition and professionalism.
Also speaking, Sole Administrator of NDDC, Effiong Akwa, said the commissioning of the project after 10 years followed six contractors, who handled the project, but were being owed for various completed projects.
He said the commission had been able to finalize the project against all odds, particularly due to paucity of funds, which was worsened by the hesitancy of oil firms to remit funds to the commission in defiance of the NDDC Act.
In his remarks, Usman said: “The SPU building is a legacy project, as the first major purpose-built facility for the SPU since its establishment in 2009. It shows NDDC’s commitment to supporting President Buhari and the police in the task of internal security.”