Date Published: 10/23/09
NSCDC operatives on suicide mission By EMMANUEL UDOM
IN 2003, Olusegun Obasanjo, former president of Nigeria, up-graded the Nigeria Security and Civil Corps from a voluntary outfit to a para-military organization and gave the corps full powers through the Act of parliament to arrest, investigate and prosecute vandals and other criminal elements in our society.
This very act, to the best of my knowledge was equally amended in 2007, which also empower the corps to regulate, control and supervise the activities of private security companies across various states of the federation and Abuja.
With these, operatives of the civil corps were expected to work closely with other security agencies in their patriotic mission of cleaning up Nigeria of criminals, vandals, and other criminally minded persons, so that the country could be certified crime free.
But, with all honestly as a journalist, not a public relations officer of NSCDC, I have observed over the years, especially in Lagos that while Obasanjo had a patriotic mission in up-grading the corps, some agents of government at the state and federal levels are probably hell-bent in killing the paramilitary outfit, through their actions and inactions.
Distinguished members of the senate and House of Representatives were elected by Nigerians and given the mandate to administer to the welfare and needs of the estimated 140million people in Nigeria. But, it is embarrassingly regrettable that since 2007, our honorables are still playing politics with the urgent need to ARM the NSCDC operatives in their deadly and dangerous mission of confronting well-armed vandals and robbers, who indulge in stealing government properties.
In Lagos, early this year, Nathaniel Ubong, former NSCDC commandant for the state was rough handled while driving home on his official car, by a woman somewhere at Ogba. Ubong, who was recently re-deployed to Abia state as the commandant, according to information had the wheenscreen of his official car almost smashed by a woman, who was said to be struggling with the right of way with the driver of the man.
The Lagos state security trust fund, which over the years has been donating vehicles, ammunitions, communication gadgets and money to the Lagos state police command has ignored the existence of NSCDC and yet Babatunde Fashola, a lawyer and action governor of Lagos state is busy planting flowers, while most NSCDC operatives attached to almost all the local government areas and development areas in the state are being harassed, intimidated and rough handled.
And yet, when I pass through some surburbs in Ikorodu, Ijora Olopa, Agege, Iyana-Ipaja, Abule-Egba, I do see civil defense corps operatives invading these suburbs unarmed with soldiers as escort, trying to displace well-armed and well-organized vandals, and yet Yar Adua claims to be performing president.
As I said earlier, I am not a paid agent for NSCDC, but a journalist, who is deeply concerned about Nigeria being certified a crime free nation, where her citizens could sleep with their two eyes open.
On the other hand of the same coin, it appears by their actions so far that our honorable are playing politics with the NSCDC amendment Act for reasons best known to them. While they are busy collecting millions as sitting and other allowances, civil corps operatives are literarily going through hell in their self-imposed attempts to serve their fatherland.
I rest my pen for now