[From CHRIS EZE, Yenagoa]
Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri, on Tuesday slammed the Al Progressives Congress (APC)- led federal government over the worsening insecurity in the country.
The who spoke in Government House, Yenagoa while receiving heads of security agencies posted newly to the state noted that insecurity in Nigeria is worse at the moment than it was in 2015 when the All Progressives Congress (APC) took over power in the country.
Governor Diri therefore called on the Federal Government to redouble its effort at combating insecurity, particularly in the northern part of the country.
While receiving Comptroller of the Nigeria Immigration Service, Bayelsa Command, Mr Sunday James, the Bayelsa helmsman lamented the level of insecurity in the north, saying once a part of the country is in distress, other areas are also affected.
He said the spate of killings by terrorists in the country was a great setback for Nigeria where lives could be taken at will.
He urged the APC-led federal government to effectively curb the killings.
“I use this opportunity to again call on the Federal Government to do something. These are the same issues that led to the APC government coming to power in 2015.
“I am sure that you will agree that things are worse now than in 2015. The Federal Government has to redouble its effort. Otherwise the joker card is with the people of Nigeria. They know what to do come 2023.
“When one part of the country is sick, it affects the other parts. Kaduna and other states in the North are sick security-wise and it is affecting other parts of the country. Nigeria is very close to the Thomas Hobbes’ ‘state of nature’ where life is described as nasty, brutish and short. The Federal Government has to do something to keep us away from the Hobbesian state,” said the governor.
Diri called for improved synergy between the service and the state government, especially in the areas of security and investment drive.
According to him, his government had put measures in place to ensure that investments thrive in the state, and expressed optimism that with collaboration with the service, Bayelsa would be the destination of choice for investors.
He explained that the relative peace being experienced in the state was as a result of collaboration among security agencies and urged the new Comptroller to tow the same path.
Earlier, the Bayelsa Command’s Immigration Comptroller, Mr. Sunday James, said the visit was to formally present himself as the new helmsman of the service in the state.
He said as the agency in charge of giving clearance to intending foreign visitors, he was prepared to synergize to realise the state’s investment drive.
Governor Diri equally charged the new Flag Officer Commanding (FOC) Central Naval Command, Rear Admiral Idi Abbas, to collaborate with the state government in curbing oil theft, illegal bunkering, kidnapping and related crimes in the maritime domain of the state.
He acknowledged that having served in the Command in other capacities, Rear Admiral Abbas would contribute significantly towards sustaining the peace and development of the state.
While congratulating him on his appointment, the governor also urged him and his officers to discharge their duties with a high sense of professionalism and not allow themselves to be influenced by partisan politics.
He said: “I believe you have distinguished and excelled in your service and will not be a pawn in the chess game of anybody or any political party.
“Ensure that you discharge your functions with utmost professionalism to bring about peace, security and development in Bayelsa and the country as a whole.
“Security does not know ethnicity. It has no face of political parties and so let nobody influence you and your Command on politics. We are in a political season and all kinds of characters are on display; the good, the bad and the ugly. The number one thing is to ensure safety of lives and property in our maritime domain and that is the only way we can talk about genuine development.”
Earlier, Rear Admiral Idi Abbas said his visit was to officially present himself to the governor following his posting to head the Command on February 4 this year.
Rear Admiral Abbas expressed gratitude to the state government for its support to the Command and appreciated it for the donation of land to build a referral hospital, adding that the secondary school allocated to the Navy would be taken over completely in no distant time.
In a related development, Governor Diri was decorated as an ambassador against drug abuse by the state command of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA).
The NDLEA State Commandant, Commander Aminu Ali, conferred the honour on the governor when he led other members of the agency to formally introduce himself as the new head of the command.
Commander Ali said the decision to decorate Governor Diri was borne out of his relentless effort and support to the command in checking the menace of illicit drugs among the youths.
Responding, Diri thanked the NDLEA for the honour, stressing that the fight against drug abuse and crime cannot be compromised in the state.
He said crime and drug had a relationship, noting that any society where criminality is high, drug abuse must be prevalent.