Former Minister of Defence, Adetokunbo Kayode, has advised the Federal Government to adopt community policing in handling security challenges facing the country, for optimal result.
Kayode said this at his country home on Sunday in Ikaram Akoko when he spoke with newsmen.
He traced the causes of the challenges facing the country to a number of factors, citing a report by U.S intelligence team in 2011, which predicted that the country might face numerous challenges by 2030, if certain measures were not taken.
Kayode, also a former Minister of Justice, said the idea of community policing, which had been floated since the return to civil rule in 1999, must be adopted by the government in tackling the current security challenge in the country.
“Let’s change the template, take a decision we must have this community policing and we can call it any name and take for instance all the police officers I have met who have been very nice,very kind, who have provided security for us are all from the North.
“Luckily for me I’m a northerner too. I speak Hausa, I lived in the North all my life, there’s no big deal about it but imagine when we have officers for instance in this village who cannot speak the local language, they don’t know anybody,the are strangers, how will they communicate?
“The same thing when you have the bulk of the officers serving in the North who are from the South West and South East, they can’t speak the local language, they don’t know anybody,
“And you see the first law of intelligence is information is being able to hear, to understand. That has to be changed,” he said.
Kayode added:”All state Commissioners of Police should be posted to their regions for starters.
“Policemen are being killed in some parts of the country, let me assure you, if those policemen are from those areas, they will be reluctant to attack them. So let’s start with that first, but community policing is a done deal. It will happen.”
He also advised the government to recruit more personnel into the armed forces, as the military had been overstretched by the challenges facing the country.
“The military is already over tasked and they are short staffed. We know this and government knows this. I knew this when I was there and I tried in my own way to suggest how this should be done.Let us democratise recruitment into Nigerian military service.
“Stop taking money to allow people to join our services. It is wrong. It was there when I was there, I tried everything within my power but again when you spend one year in a place you aren’t going to do much. I’m not giving an excuse what I’m saying is this is one of the ways forward.
“Right now, I don’t know maybe we have up to 100,000 military personnels What is that? A country of 200 million and we have our youths roaming the street and devil is finding work for them, because devil finds work for idle hands.