Police, Military Aiding Kidnappers, Senators Allege …As Senate Passes FCC Bill, 2019

Flashback: Rivers State Deputy Governor, Dr. (Mrs.) Ipalibo Harry Banigo, exchanging pleasantries with the General Overseer, Redemption Ministries, Rev. Stephen Oluwole Akinola, during the thanksgiving service and66th birthday celebration of the cleric in Port Harcourt, recently.

At Senate plenary, yesterday, some lawmakers disclosed that certain intelligence sources had accused some Police and military operatives of having direct link with the prowling bandits and kidnappers across the country.
It was also emphasised that criminal activity has fast become a ‘booming business’.
These disclosures were made following an adopted motion sponsored by Senator Shehu Sani and co-sponsored by 108 other senators titled, ‘Senseless Killing of a Briton and the abduction of three others in a Holiday Resort in Kaduna State by Armed Bandits’.
As lawmakers took turns to make their contributions, Senator Emmanuel Bwacha representing Taraba South said some intelligence reports he gathered have pointed accusing fingers at some police and military operatives, saying kidnappers have direct link with some security officials.
In his words, “I was told at one instance of the kidnapping incidents that kidnappers have a direct link with some security agents.
“A victim had revealed to me that in the payment of ransom, one of the kidnappers said they need a certain amount of money to enable them settle all interest groups in the ‘business’ among which are the police and army.
“We must be out of blame game but government must know that its primary responsibility is the protection of live and property.
“Creation of State Police is important. This is because the kidnap colony is in the hinterland. It is only the locals that can find out the hideouts.
“With state Police, vigilantes can be recruited to complement the efforts of the police in smoking out these criminals. Kidnap victims can only be easily traced out by the locals.
“Farmers no longer go to their farms particularly in Taraba, Zamfara and Benue states for fear of uncertainty.
“One day, we may wake up with money to buy food without seeing foodstuffs to buy”.
Also, Senator Kabir Garba Marafa in his contribution said there was no business again thriving in the north apart from kidnapping and other heinous crimes.
He said, “Let nobody deceive you. There is war in the north.
“In the near future, it may be out of control and, coming to Abuja to take a refuge may be a mirage.
“I’m from Zamfara State. I know what I am talking. Unless something is done urgently, in the next few years, the people may be wiped out by the marauding bandits.
“Kaduna people have abandoned their farms for fear of being kidnapped. You either go to farm in the company of security operatives or you don’t go.
“Now everybody in the north rely on government for survival. The businesses in the north are dead. It is only kidnapping that is thriving.”
Meanwhile, the Senate has passed the Federal Cooperative Colleges Bill, 2019.
The Bill, titled Senate Bill 418, was read for the third time on Thursday during the plenary and then passed.
Earlier, Senator Barau Jibrin (APC -Kano North) had presented the report of the Committee on Tertiary Institutions and TETFUND on the National Commission for Colleges of Education Act (Repeal and Re-enactment) Bill, 2019 (SB. 561).
The Seantor representing Kaduna Central at the Senate, Shehu Sani, seconded it and urged the Senate to consider it.
The Senate then dissolved into the Committee of the Whole for the clause-by-clause consideration of the Bill; following which the Senate reverted to plenary and reported progress of the Bill.
The National Commission for Colleges of Education Act (Repeal and Re-enactment) Bill, 2019 (SB. 561) was then read for the third time and passed.


Nneka Amaechi-Nnadi, Abuja