Legal Framework for Policing

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GUEST COLUMNIST: FEMI FALANA

Against the background of the gross abuse of police powers in the northern and western regions in the first republic the drafters of the 1979 Constitution recommended the establishment of the Nigeria Police Force for the entire federation. In order to justify the aberration it was said that single police is not inherently incompatible with federalism.

According to Professor Nwabueze, a member of the Constitution Drafting Committee had stated that “It all depends on how the control of the force is organized. A single police force has the advantage that it exposes the individual to less risk of oppression than one under the autonomous control of his state government. This consideration should override all others.” The Olusegun Obasanjo military regime adopted the recommendation in the 1979 Constitution. A similar provision was also inserted into the 1999 Constitution by the Abdulsalami Abubakar military junta.

But our recent experience has proved beyond any shadow of doubt that the establishment of a single and central police force for the country has not enhanced the maintenance of law and order. Aside the inability of the Nigeria Police Force to guarantee law and order the Nigerian people have witnessed the usurpation of police powers and abuse of same by the federal government. Indeed, without any challenge by the 36 state governments the Nigeria Police Force has since been turned into an organ of brutal coercion by the federal government. To that extent the call for state police has increased due to incessant armed robbery attacks in the homes of people, abduction of travelers on the roads, reckless killing of unarmed people by terrorist and bandits and extra-judicial killing of criminal suspects by the Nigeria Police Force and the armed forces.

Section 214 of the 1999 Constitution states that “There shall be Police Force for Nigeria which shall be known as the Nigeria Police Force, and subject to the provisions of this Section no other police force shall be established for the Federation or any part thereof.” It is further provided that the Nigeria Police Force shall be organised and administered in accordance with such provisions as may be prescribed by an Act of the National Assembly while the members of the Nigeria Police Force shall have such powers and duties as may be conferred upon them by law. Consequently, the National Assembly has enacted the Police Act (Cap P19) Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 for the organization and administration of the Nigeria Police Force. The Act has also conferred enormous powers on the Police in the maintenance of law and order in the federation.

Unlike the armed forces which are headed by the President and Commander-in-Chief the Nigeria Police Force is headed by the Inspector-General of Police. By the combined effect of sections 215 (1) and 216 (2) of the 1999 Constitution an Inspector-General of Police shall not be appointed or removed from office by the President without consulting and seeking the advice of the Nigeria Police Council (NPC). By virtue of 153 (1) (N) of the Constitution the Nigeria Police Council is one of the Federal Executive Bodies created for the country. The NPC is constituted by the President, the Governor of each of the States of the Federations, the Chairman of the Police Service Commission and Inspector-General of Police

The functions of the NPC include the general supervision, organization and administration of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) and other matters relating thereto (not being matters relating to the use and operational control, appointment, disciplinary control and dismissal of members of the NPF. The NPC is also required to advise the President on the appointment and removal of the Inspector-General of Police pursuant to Paragraph L, Part 1 of the Third Schedule to the Constitution. This means that 36 out of the 39 members of the NPC are state governors. But for reasons best known to the governors, the President has been allowed to usurp the powers of the NPC with respect to the appointment and removal of the IGP and the general supervision of the NPF. The NPC has not adduced any reason to justify its failure to hold regular meetings and take decisions in line with the provisions of Section 159 of the Constitution.

The members of the Police Service Commission (PSC) are appointed by the President subject to the confirmation of the Senate. The commissioner of police for each state of the federation shall be appointed or removed by the Police Service Commission. Section 215 of the Constitution has empowered the President or any Minister authorized in that behalf to give lawful instructions to the IGP with respect to the maintenance and securing of public safety and public order as may be considered necessary and such instruction shall be compiled with. Similarly, the governor of a state or any commissioner so directed may give lawful instructions to the Commissioner of Police of that State with respect to maintenance of security and public order within the State and the Commissioner of Police shall comply with the instructions provided that before complying with the instructions the Commissioner may request that this matter be referred to the President or the appropriate minister for directions.

It is on record that successive administrations have converted he NPF to the Federal Government Police Force which is administered singlehandedly by the President. While state governments are barred from establishing state police service on the grounds that there shall be only one police force in the country the federal government has created the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps. The corps was given statutory backing by the national assembly with the enactment of the Nigeria Security and Defence Corps Act, 2003 as amended. Other agencies whose officials have been authorized to bear arms and perform police functions include the State Security Service, Nigeria Customs Service, Nigeria Correctional Service and the anti-graft agencies.

In recent time, the maintenance of internal security has been taken over by the Nigerian Army in several states of the federation. Military commanders are members of the security councils headed by governors in all the states of the federation while the anti-robbery squad in each state is constituted by soldiers and police personnel. The armed forces have also engaged in the control of protests and public meetings. In spite of the declaration of the federal high court and the Court of Appeal that it is illegal to involve the armed forces in election duties, some state governors have continued to invite the President to deploy armed soldiers to maintain law and order during elections. Such usurpation of police duties by the armed forces has led to the reckless killing of unarmed citizens in several parts of the country.

Whereas the secret agency established by the National Security Agencies Act law is the State Security Service (SSS) the federal government has been allowed to turn it into an organ of the federal government like the Nigeria Police Force. It is now called the Department of State Security Service (DSS). But in Mimiko v. Agagu v. Mimiko (2010) 32 WRN 16 the Court of Appeal berated both security agencies for supporting the candidate of the ruling party. On the need for the Police and the SSS to maintain neutrality in the performance of their duties the Court said that “public policy demands that the two institutions do not descend into the arena, and theirs is to tend the rope in the interest of peace and stability in the land, thus, they should learn to remain neutral and strive to attain the aura of neutrality bestowed on them by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”

In the same vein, the Supreme Court enjoined the Police to maintain neutrality at all times in the case of Attorney-General of the Federation vs. Alhaji Atiku Abubakar. Speaking for the apex court, Aderemi JSC of blessed memory said that, “The primary duty, indeed the most fundamental duty of the Nigeria Police Force is the maintenance and securing of public safety and public order within the country. In the performance of its duty, the Nigeria Police Force must manifestly demonstrate impartiality, it must not lean to one side against the other, it must be apolitical. It must not take part in any disputation which has political coloration. These qualities are sine qua non to the enhancement of public respectability to it.”

Fear of State Police

No doubt, many citizens are opposed to the establishment of state police for the fear that it may be used to haunt the political opponents of some state governors. I know a state governor in the south west who once had a killer squad headed by his chief security officer, a police officer. One of the unarmed citizens mowed down by the illegal squad was a world bank expert. All efforts to prosecute the suspects who were indicted in several killing of unarmed citizens by the squad have been frustrated by the state government. The story is the same in in a few other states in the country. To that extent the fear of the possible manipulation of state police by state governors is genuine.

To avoid a situation whereby abuse of police powers is decentralized any security service established by state governments should be democratically controlled. The service will be funded by the state governments and superintended by an independent state police council of 5 members. The members of the council should be accredited representatives of the state government, labour, women, youths and the business community. The service will police the state and see to the enforcement of all the laws enacted by the state house of assembly. The success of the civilian Joint Task Force in the counter insurgency operations in Borno state has proved that the best way to police a country is to recruit, train and equip young men and women to operate in their own communities. The colonial practice of posting police personnel to operate outside their states of origin was meant to suppress and intimidate colonial subjects by strangers. It is a practice which has become counter- productive in a post -colonial state. Every police officer should operate in their community, speak the local language and mix freely with the people. Without an understanding of the cultural background of a people a police officer cannot successfully gather intelligence which is a sine qua non condition for effective police operations.

Lip Service to National Security

In its Manifesto the All Progressive Congress (APC) has undertaken to commence “widespread consultations to amend the Constitution to enable States and Local Governments to employ State and Community Police to address the peculiar needs of each community. This would mean setting boundaries for Federal, State and Community Police through new Criminal Justice legislation to replace the Criminal Code, the Penal Code and the Police Act.” The APC Committee on federalism headed by Governor El Rufai recommended the establishment of state police. The Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo reiterated the position of the ruling party when he said “we have argued repeatedly, and we believe it is the position of our party, that you cannot police a country of this size, with a police command that functions out of Abuja. It is just impossible, we must have a state police, community police. The reason why it is so obvious is that policing is always a local function.”

Apparently, President Muhammadu Buhari is not totally opposed to state police but he has his reservations. He has repeatedly expressed the fear that a number of state governments might endanger national security if state security operatives are owed arrears of salaries like workers. According to the President: “It may be more efficient, which was why I congratulated the governor of Lagos State (Akinwunmi Ambode) when he started the Lagos State Neighbourhood Corps. It’s a good initiative. Lagos State is richer than the Federal Government. How many states are there that can pay salaries and you now ask them to go and form state Police?”
At the meeting of the National Economic Council held on August 16, 2018 it was unanimously resolved by the members that the Nigeria Police Force be decentralised for effective performance. Accordingly, the Council set up a Committee of NEC with representatives from the six geopolitical zones, including Zamfara, Ondo, Plateau, Ebonyi, Katsina, Edo and Borno States to meet with the Inspector General of Police, to determine how to ensure the decentralization of the police operations as quickly as possible. But since then no action has been taken towards the decentralisation of the Police.

Since the NPC is the appropriate body recognized by the Constitution to organize, administer and supervise the Nigeria Police Force the resolution ought to have been submitted to the body and not to the Inspector-General of Police. In other words, if the governors are determined to have the Nigeria Police Force decentralised they are advised to use their numerical strength in the NPC to achieve the objective. In other words, the Council should meet to deliberate and take a decision on the decentralisation of the Nigeria Police Force. With respect, since the Council is constitutionally empowered to organize, administer and supervise the Nigeria police Force it is competent to decentralize the Nigeria Force without any constitutional amendment.

About two months ago, the nation was informed that the Minister of Police Affairs had received approval from the Presidency to recruit additional 400,000 police personnel to address the manpower shortage in the Nigeria Police Force and insecurity in the country. The police affairs minister, Mr. Mohammed Dingyadi, has set up a 13-man Ministerial Project Coordination Committee to carry out the recruitment as well as the implementation process of new policies to end security challenges in the country.
With respect, the laudable decision of the President is a proposal which requires the ratification of the Nigeria Police Council. Otherwise, the Police Service Commission and the Inspector General of Police may be embroiled in another round of legal battle over the recruitment of the 400,000 police personnel. Therefore, the NPC ought to act promptly to avoid the embarrassment that was recently witnessed when the Police Service Commission dragged the Inspector General of Police to court over the recruitment of 10,000 police personnel.

During a meeting with traditional rulers led by the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi on August 1, 2019, President Muhammadu Buhari was reported to have unfolded a two-pronged approach to stem the spike in cases of kidnapping, killing and banditry that have worsened the security situation in the country. The president, according to a statement by his chief spokesmen, Mr. Femi Adesina promised to equip the police with advanced technology with a view to improving their capacity to fight crimes. He said: “Working with state governments, we intend to beef up the equipping of the police force with advanced technology and equipment that can facilitate the work of the security agencies. We will be issuing directives to the appropriate federal authorities to speedily approve licensing for states requesting the use of drones to monitor forests and other criminal hideouts. We also intend to install CCTVs on highways and other strategic locations so that activities in some of those hidden places can be exposed, more effectively monitored and open to actionable review.”

Duty of Citizens to Arrest and Prosecute Criminal Suspects

A duty has been imposed on every citizen by Section 24 (2) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to render assistance to appropriate and lawful agencies in the maintenance of law and order. In assisting law enforcement agencies to maintain law and order in the society section 20 of the Administration of criminal justice Act has empowered any person to arrest a suspect who in his presence commits an offence, or whom he reasonably suspects of having committed an offence for which the police is entitled to arrest without a warrant. Section 21 of the Act further states that a suspect found committing an offence involving injury to property may be arrested without a warrant by the owner of the property or his servants, agents or persons authorized by him.

A private person may arrest any suspect found damaging public property (section 22). A Private person who arrests a suspect without a warrant shall immediately hand over the suspect arrest to a police officer or to the nearest police station. The right of private prosecutors is guaranteed by Sections 383 and 384 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015. In Fawehinmi Vs Akilu (1987) 2 NWLR (PT 67) 767, the Supreme Court relaxed the reactionary doctrine of locus standi in order to permit the private prosecution of criminal offences by concerned individuals. The rational for the decision as explained by Kayode Eso JSC of blessed memory is that “we are all our brothers’ keepers”.

Right of Citizens to Self Defence

Sometime last year, an influential member of the ruling class, General Theophilus Yakubu Danjuma (rtd) a former Chief of Army Staff and former Minister of Defence called on the Nigerians to defend themselves against killers in the country as the federal government had proven incapable to protect them. In particular, he stated that “our armed forces are not neutral. They collude with the bandits to kill people, kill Nigerians. The armed forces guide their movements; they cover them. If you are depending on the armed forces to stop the killings, you will all die one by one. I ask every one of you to be alert and defend your country, defend your territory and defend your state. Defend yourselves because you have no other place to go. God bless our country.”

Apart from subjecting General Danjuma to the bile reserved for those who criticise the Buhari administration the Presidency did not challenge the serious allegations made by him. On its own part the Nigerian Army dismissed the allegations with a wave of the hand. However, Governor Zulum of Borno state of using the so called “positive identification operation” to extort money from members of the public. The Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court has threatened to open investigation into allegations of human rights abuse by the armed forces engaged in the counter insurgency operations.

It is pertinent to draw the attention of the federal government to Section 33 (1) of the 1999 Constitution has imposed a duty on the State to guarantee and protect the right of every person to life. Notwithstanding such duty imposed on the State the right to self-defence is equally guaranteed by Section 33 (2) of the Constitution which provides that “A person shall not be regarded as having been deprived of his life in contravention of this section, if he dies as a result of the use, to such extent and in such circumstances as are permitted by law, of such force as is reasonably necessary – (a) for the defence of any person from unlawful violence or for the defence of property.”

Since Nigeria is a capitalist society the right to the defence of property is constitutionally guaranteed by section 33 (2) of the Constitution which states that “A person shall not be regarded as having been deprived of his life in contravention of this section, if he dies as a result of the use, to such extent and in such circumstances as are permitted by law, of such force as is reasonably necessary – (a) for the defence of any person from unlawful violence or for the defence of property.” indeed, both the Criminal Code and Penal Code provide that a person is not criminally liable for an act, when the act is reasonably necessary in order to resist actual and unlawful violence threatened to him or to another person in his presence. In interpreting section 286 of the Criminal Code in Akpan V. State (1994) 9 NWLR Pt 368) 347, Adio JSC (as he then was) held as follows:

“When a person is unlawfully assaulted, and has not provoked the assault, it is lawful for him to use such force on the assailant as is reasonably necessary to make effectual defence against the assault. The force which may be used in such circumstances must not be intended, and should not be such as is likely to cause death or grievous harm. If the nature of the assault is such as to cause reasonable apprehension of death or grievous harm, and the person using force by way of defence believes on reasonable grounds that he cannot otherwise preserve the person defended from death or grievous harm, it is lawful for him to use any such force to the assailant as is necessary for defence even though such force may cause death or grievous harm.”

Powers of State Governments to Establish Security Agencies

Section 14 (2) of the Constitution provides that the security and welfare of the people shall be the primary purpose of government i.e the federal, state and local government. In Attorney-General, Ondo State v Attorney-General of the Federation (2002) 1 WRN 1 the Supreme Court held that the federal, state and local governments have the power to fight corrupt practices and abuse of office. Like the federal government which set up the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Offences Commission and Code of Conduct Bureau the Kano and Oyo state governments have established anti -corruption agencies.

As security officers of the states, governors have the power to adopt measures deemed fit to ensure the maintenance of law and order. Since 1999, state governors have imposed curfew whenever there has been a breakdown of law and order. They have also set up judicial or administrative commissions of enquiry. As tribunals of enquiry are not provided for in either the exclusive or concurrent list it is a residuary matter. Hence, in Chief Gani Fawehinmi v. Ibrahim Babangida (2003) 12 WRN 1 the Supreme Court held that the power to set a Tribunal of Inquiry is vested in state governors and that the power of the President to institute a commission of enquiry under the Tribunal of Enquiry Act is limited to the Federal Capital Territory.

In exercise of their constitutional power state governors are entitled to assign responsibility to commissioners of Police for maintaining law and order. In Attorney-General of Anambra State V Attorney-General of the Federation (2005) 9 NWLR (Pt 931) 572 the Supreme Court held that “The Constitution in section 215 subsection (1) clearly gives the Governor of Anambra State the power to issue lawful direction to the Commissioner of Police, Anambra State in connection with securing public safety and order in the State.”

Whereas the Inspector General of Police been issuing police permit for public meetings and rallies. But in Inspector-General of Police v ANPP (2008) 12 WRN 65 it was held by the federal high court that police permit for rallies was illegal and unconstitutional and that the governor is the appropriate authority who may delegate powers to a Commissioner of Police under the Public Order Act. It was further held that the Inspector-General of Police cannot exercise any power under the Act. The decision was upheld by the Court of in All Nigeria Peoples Party & Ors. v. Inspector General of Police (2008) 12 WRN 65. But in spite of the clear provisions of the Public Order Act state governors have applied to the Inspector General of Police to allow them to hold rallies and public meetings in their own states.

Amotekun and National Integration

In challenging the security outfit some self – appointed agents of unity have accused the south west governors of preparing for the disintegration of the country. Although the allegation is totally baseless it was fuelled by the announcement that the security outfit would be constituted by members of the OPC movement and vigilante groups. Not unexpectedly, a number of irredentists have given the misleading impression that Amotekun was out to protect the Yoruba people alone in a region with a large population of people from other ethnic groups and foreign countries. It was at that juncture that I was compelled to call on the government of the each of the south west states to enact the law for the establishment, functions, recruitment, funding and operations of the Amotekun.

However, I pointed out that the regions or geopolitical zones are recognised by law as the six states have been grouped together and recognised as the “south west zone” by the Federal Character Commission Act (Cap F7) Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004. Based on that law I opined that the south west governors are not precluded from collaborating in securing the life and property of every person living or visiting the region. I also argued that the security outfit cannot be questioned as “the federal government has never challenged the legality of the Odua Investment Company Limited which is the economic union of the six states in the south west zone”. Having lost control of the monopoly of violence to armed gangs I am of the firm view that the federal government lacks the legal, political and moral right to challenge security outfits set up by state governments and individuals. I want to believe that the federal government decided to drop its opposition to Amotekun because the police and the armed forces lack the capacity to protect the life and property of every person in Nigeria.

After an emergency meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari on January 18 last month the Service chiefs warned state governors to desist from undermining national security. The Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadiq Abubakar, who briefed State House correspondents on the outcome of the meeting, called on Nigerians to support the security forces rather than do anything that negates the approved community policing. He threatened that “We will ensure that nobody undermines the territorial and national sovereignty of Nigeria. Our appeal is for all Nigerians and other stakeholders to join hands with the Armed Forces of Nigeria and other security and intelligence agencies to ensure that our country is secured rather than looking at other methods that are likely going to negate the national policy and community policing policy that the Federal Government has approved. What we expect is for all stakeholders, local government, state government, other stakeholders to join hands with us, let us work together to ensure that our country is secured.

Regrettably, the Nigeria Governors Forum did not react to the illegal threat issued by the service chiefs. The service chiefs ought to have been cautioned to desist from engaging in acts of insubordination by talking down on elected governors. The other day, the service chiefs were reported to have ignored the invitation of the House of Representatives to brief the members on the worsening security situation in the country. It is high time the Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces, President Muhammadu Buhari compelled the service chiefs to subject themselves to civil authorities under the current democratic dispensation.

Social Security for the Nigerian People

Even though the Amotekun and similar security initiatives are a positive development in the area of internal security they will not solve the problem of insecurity in the country. It is submitted that a socioeconomic system that denies the majority of people their means of livelihood is bound to generate instability. In other words, a system which alienates millions of young from society produces its own contradictions as the instinct to survive brings about a desperation, an alienation from society. Young people who feel alienated from society are bound to react by devising ways to protest by joining criminal gangs to fight the society.

While relying on the National Security Strategy Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has said that: “We recognize that Nigeria’s greatest resource is its people and that the truest measure of our progress lies in the degree to which access to opportunities for empowerment and self-actualization are provided. Consequently, we will promote free enterprise, inclusive economic growth and continue to aggressively pursue the diversification of the economy with emphasis on developing our human capital.”

Even though the analysis of the Vice President cannot be faulted the solution proffered by the federal government cannot work. It has to be pointed out that an economic programme that generates poverty and mass unemployment of youths cannot meaningfully combat violent crimes. Many interest groups have demanded for the restructuring of the country. In supporting the demand for restructuring we have argued that mere devolution of powers from the federal government to the other federating units will not guarantee law and order or political stability without equitable redistribution of the commonwealth. Hence, we made a strong case for horizontal and vertical restructuring or power devolution. In particular, the privatization of the commonwealth has to give way to collective ownership of the means of production, distribution and exchange as provided for in section 16 of the Constitution.

Prohibited Weapons in Nigeria

The Firearms Act (Cap F.28 ) Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 provides for regulating the possession and dealing in firearms and ammunition including muzzle-loading firearms and for ancillary matters. By virtue of Section 3 of the Firearms Act no person shall have in his possession or under his control any prohibited firearms except in accordance with a licence granted by the President acting his discretion. The firearms prohibited by the Act are:

i. Artillery; ii. Apparatus for the discharge of any explosives of gas diffusing projectile; iii. Rocket weapons; iv. Bombs and Grenades; v. Machine-Guns and Machine-Pistols; vi. Military rifles, namely; those of calibers 7.62mm, 9mm, .300 inches;
vii. Revolvers and Pistols whether rifled or unrifled (including flint-lock pistols and cap pistols); viii. Firearms such as Pump action gun of all categories; ix. Any other firearms/lethal weapons fabricated to kill.

It is however submitted that the use of teargas and other offensive weapons not prohibited under the Firearms Act may be acquired by state governments for security bodies without presidential licence. Therefore, I fully agree with Onyekachi Umah, Esq who has said that: “You don’t need police clearance, license or permit to import, export, distribute, sell, purchase, own, possess, carry, display or use any offensive weapons, including any electroshock weapon, Taser Guns, Pepper Sprays and Stun Guns in any part of Nigeria. There is no federal or state law prohibiting the use of such, rather the law criminalises the use of offensive weapons for criminal activities or possession of such with a criminal mind.”

It is submitted that pursuant to section 5(2) of the Act the Commissioner of Police of State with the consent of the governor of the State may by order prohibit the possession on control of any firearm of the categories specified in Part III of the Schedule to the Act without the licence of an authority. In accordance with the powers conferred on him under the Act the President, through the Inspector-General of Police may grant licences to persons who apply to be in possession or trade in firearms. On a number of occasions the President granted applications made by governors for the importation of firearms and ammunition for the police. It is therefore suggested that any State government which sets up a security agency should apply to the President for the required number of licences for firearms and ammunition for the members of the agency. If the application is refused the State government may challenge the illegal exercise of discretion by the President.

Legality of Prosecution of Criminal Cases in the States by Lay Police Officers

The Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015 has restricted the prosecutions of criminal cases to law officers. Accordingly, all lay police officers have been prohibited from prosecuting criminal cases in all courts in Nigeria. But since the ACJA is a federal enactment it may not have binding force on lay police officers who might have been authorised by law or the Attorney-General of a State to continue to prosecute criminal cases in the Magistrate Courts in the State. Only Delta and Kano state governments have adopted the policy of the Federal Government by restricting prosecution of criminal cases in all courts to law officers.

Police officers are empowered to prosecute criminal cases in all courts in the country by virtue of Section 23 of the Police Act. Subjecting police officers to prosecute in the Federal High Court are federal enactments which are not applicable to state courts. Since the Attorneys-General are in charge of prosecution of all cases in the States they are not bound by the provisions of the Police Act. We are therefore of the strong view that in the absence of any specific State legislation lay police officers lack the power to prosecute criminal cases in all Magistrate Courts in all the states of the Federation. Therefore, each state ministry of justice should employ more legal practitioners to take over the prosecution of criminal cases in the Magistrate courts from lay police officers.

Conclusion

Notwithstanding that the Constitution has decreed the establishment of one police force the federal government has set up other forces. State governments ought to take advantage of such decentralisation by establishing state security service for enforcing state laws and for protection the life and property of every person living in the states. As individual citizens are empowered by law to arrest and prosecute criminal suspects there is no legal justification for preventing state governments from setting up law enforcement agencies for the proper coordination of the arrest, investigation and prosecution of criminal suspects terrorising the society. Meanwhile, state governors should ensure that the meetings of the NPC are held on a regular basis in line with the provisions of the Constitution.

Finally, the federal government should be pressurised to jettison the implementation of neo liberal economic policies that have continued to pauperise the majority of Nigerian people. In order to eradicate poverty from the land the people should be involved in the planning and execution of development centred programmes. Otherwise, the government cannot seriously tackle the menace of insecurity of life and property in the country.