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Government vows against blackmail in securing Nigerians, property

By Terhemba Daka, Kingsley Jeremiah and Segun Olaniyi, Abuja
05 December 2019   |   3:47 am
The presidency yesterday vowed not to be blackmailed in complying with certain socio-cultural issues as it deals with the security threats confronting the country.

The presidency yesterday vowed not to be blackmailed in complying with certain socio-cultural issues as it deals with the security threats confronting the country.

This comes as it launched a new National Security Strategy (NSS) 2019 to address the safety and wellbeing of Nigerians.

During the event in Abuja, attended by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, Deputy Senate President Ovie Omo-Agege, Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila and heads of security agencies, the National Security Adviser (NSA), Major General Babagana Monguno (rtd), maintained that the Almajiri system in the north was one of the challenges that must be tackled headlong.

He said the new strategy would also address poverty eradication and illiteracy as well as issues revolving around out-of-school children.

Monguno had, however, in June this year announced plans by the Federal Government to ban the Almajiri system.

During a chat with State House correspondents, he had stated: “Ultimately, government will have to proscribe this Almajiri phenomenon because we cannot continue to have street urchins and children roaming around only for them in a couple of years, or decades, to become a problem to the society.”

But the presidency after the NSA’s remarks cautioned that any such ban would have to follow due process after a robust consultation with relevant stakeholders.

Monguno recalled that the maiden edition of the NSS was published in 2014, adding that ever since evolving trends in the security environment had given rise to new and more complex challenges hence a review of the strategy based on the timeline of five years.

He explained that the new document was designed to look at Nigeria’s national security objectives in line with the goals of the current administration in fighting corruption, giving access to improved education as well as addressing the healthcare problems of the citizens.

Meanwhile, the Civil Society and Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC) has accused the military high command of flouting the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) by allegedly failing to publish the expenses it had incurred in tackling insecurity.

ddressing a press briefing on behalf of the group, Jaye Gaskia, Col. Ademola Lawal (rtd) and Salaudeen Hashim, backed the Transparency International’s (TI) allegation that “$15billion had quietly left Nigeria through the back door.”

CISLAC argued that keeping such information classified and away from the public was an “indirect means of fleecing the country of vital resources for development.”