The ActionAid Nigeria (AAN) has urged security agencies to observe neutrality and professionalism and to also intensify training and intelligence sharing among each other as part of measures to ensure the success of the 2019 General Elections and national development.
The chairman board of the AAN, Prof. Patricia Donli and the Country Director of AAN, Ms Ene Obi, made the call on Saturday in Abuja at the Board of Directors meeting and Annual General Meeting (AGM) of its General Assembly.
This is as the board commended the Federal Government for the release of the Dapchi schoolgirls, and tasked President Muhammadu Buhari for the release of the remaining Chibok girls and the only remaining Dapchi girl, Leah Shuaibu and that everything should be done to return them safely.
“There appears to be lack of synergy between security forces in the country. The security situation in Nigeria has continued to deteriorate as a result of perceived lack of neutrality, and professionalism on the part of security agencies as well as a lack of synergy in operations and sharing of intelligence. This has resulted in the state of insecurity that has manifested in diverse forms across the country.
“We call on all security agencies to observe neutrality and professionalism, intensify training and intelligence sharing which must include all stakeholders within the Nigerian security architecture. ActionAid calls on all stakeholders to play politics with respect to the rule of the game discourage violence and use of money to influence the electorates,” Donli said.
She urged the federal government to accelerate the 2018 budget implementation recently passed, by ensuring timely release of funds, and for the National Assembly to carry out its constitutional responsibility of oversight to ensure that the budget translates to improved welfare for Nigerians.
She also frowned at the lack of mutual cooperation between the executive and the legislature in the spirit of the principles of separation of powers in the Nigerian constitution despite that these two branches are controlled by one party at the detriment of effective governance and service delivery.
She lament the wide spread concerns that the credibility of the 2019 elections will be marred by ethnic, religious and regional mobilization, money politics, reliance on violence and lack of respect for the rules of the game by parties, candidates and political gladiators, as being manifested in inflammatory statements, grandstanding, and called for actions to stem the trend.
She added, “We note with concern that despite Nigeria’s endowment with natural and human resources, and a governance framework expected to ensure service delivery, poverty levels in the country have worsened to the extent that Nigeria has been named the country with the highest population of people who live in extreme poverty.
“We urge the government to engage all necessary partnerships and strategies to end absolute poverty in Nigeria within the shortest possible time. If the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) policy is thoroughly implemented, we believe it will reduce the population of people living in extreme poverty before the end of the policy timeline of 2020.