Insecurity: Governors to Hold Emergency Meeting Wednesday

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By Chuks Okocha

Nigeria’s 36 governors have summoned an emergency meeting to discuss the rising wave of insecurity across the states.

This meeting was scheduled for Wednesday after the governors met Tuesday and reviewed the National Economic Committee (NEC) subcommittee meeting report.

One of the governors told THISDAY that the Wednesday meeting of the governors will be preparatory to their proposed meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari any time soon.

When asked whether the governors would, like the National Assembly, call for the sack of the service chiefs, the governor said, “Let’s not preempt the meeting. Let us meet first as a body of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum.

“The level of insecurity in the country is real. This is not partisan politics”, the governor said, explaining that “whatever decision taken would be in national interest”.

The position of the governor was confirmed in a statement by the Governors’ Forum Head of Media and Information, Bello Barkindo, who said that the governors would be holding their 14th Teleconference Wednesday.

He said that one of the main items of the virtual conference would be the insecurity in the country.

According to the statement from the NGF, “The rapidly degenerating security situation in the country will feature very prominently when governors meet tomorrow for their 14th NGF Teleconference meeting, according to the invitation sent out to governors by the Director General of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum, NGF, Mr Asishana Bayo Okauru”.

The statement further said that “Not unexpectedly, in line with the security and policing swamp that the country has found itself, the attack on Borno State Governor, Professor Babagana Umara Zulum, will be tabled for discussion”.

The NGF statement further added that “just as the state governors will also preview a webinar which comes up on the 11 of August, driven through a partnership of the Nigeria Governors Forum and the Centre for Value in Leadership, CVL, led by Professor Pat Utomi”.

The statement said that one of such webinar had taken place last month where the Governor of Lagos State Mr Babajide Sanwo- x-rayed iInsecurity and the challenges of Governance and Leadership in the New Normal, as it affects his state.

He added, “That too will come under the governors’ searchlight. Tomorrow’s meeting will commence at 2pm prompt but the virtual platform will be open to join an hour earlier.”

The NGF said that other items on the agenda of the governors’ meeting include the the flag-off of the distribution of palliatives by the Coalition Against COVID19, CACOVID, in the states and the issue of yet-to-be accessed funds at Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC).

Still on education, it said the governors will review the resumption of schools and the roll out plan.

According to the statement, “Apart from security and education, the permanent items on the Teleconferences since the pandemic, health and the economy will also make it to the table.

It said that the Governor Ifeanyi Okowa Committee of the NGF which interfaces with the Presidential Task Force on the Pandemic will brief the governors on progress so far before the governors discuss the economy.

Under this item, it said that the progress on States’ Fiscal Transparency, Accountability and Sustainability program SFTAS will be examined.

The statement added that there would also be updates on the restructuring of states’ loans at the meeting and there would be follow up at the meeting.