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Senate canvasses low interest loans for ranches

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Cattle

The Senate yesterday sought low interest loans for herdsmen to establish ranches as part of measures to halt the killings occasioned by attacks on communities by armed herdsmen nationwide.

The upper chamber of the National Assembly urged the Federal Government to set aside an unspecified amount of money to be given at low interest rates to herders to enable them execute the project.

The resolution followed the adoption of a motion by Attai Aidoko (Kogi East).

The resolve was part of the 19 measures adopted by the lawmakers as tools for addressing the prevailing insecurity in the country.

The resolution is to be submitted to President Muhammadu Buhari by the leadership of the Senate.

The move was a fallout of a report of a summit organised by the chamber in February. The parley reviewed the nation’s security infrastructure.

According to the chairman of the Ad hoc Committee, Ahmad Lawan, the leaderships of the security agencies as well as the Ministers of Defence and Interior were consulted in the course of the assignment.

Reading the report on the floor of the chamber, Lawan revealed that regional leaders, farmers and herdsmen were also engaged.

The committee identified absence of governance and ungoverned space, inadequate intelligence information sharing mechanisms among security agencies, poor administration of criminal justice system, porous borders as well as poor border control as major causes of collapse of he nation’s security architecture.

The panel equally noted that poverty, climate change and cultural and social impediments were contributing to the current security challenges in the country.

After a three-hour debate, the Senate adopted 19 recommendations, noting: “The nation’s basic security infrastructure needs to be comprehensively reviewed and strengthened. The Nigerian political structure should be a major factor in this review as well as the nature of the challenges the nation faces.”

The report reads in part: “There is the need to isolate current security challenges from political partisanship, narrow political interests and ethno-religious sentiments. Political office holders and all sources of influence should restrain from tendencies capable of worsening the nation’s current challenges.”

It further noted: “The basic structure in the management of national security should be revisited by the presidency to address weaknesses in coordination, collaboration and synergy.

“All the nation’s security assets are dangerously stretched by current security challenges. There is the need to increase the capacity of the Nigeria Police Force, military and other para-military agencies.

“Collaboration between federal security and law agencies and sub-national outfits needs to be re-examined in the context of demands for improved security and imperativeness of reducing exposure of citizens to extra-legal influences.

“Technology should be built into the core of national security architecture and management as well as an informed investment strategy into relevant areas of intelligence and data collection.”


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