Minister of Interior, Hon. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, has said that only the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps ( NSCDC) has the capability to relieve Nigeria’s overstretched military from fighting terrorism and other numerous security challenges confronting the nation.
Tunji-Ojo who wished that Nigerians can genuinely appreciate the innovations and excellent strides attained by the Corps said they have the equipment and aptitude required to foresee insecurity in the nation’s territory and work at nullifying them with intelligence obtained by providing early warnings on enemy movements.
“We are impressed that the Civil Defense Corps have continuously decimated Vandals and saved the country more hundreds of billions by stopping crude oil theft and other national assets. He further assured them that President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has their back because their job is very novel and key. He stated this on Thursday, in Abuja during his familiarisation visit to the headquarters of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC).
The Minister, who pointed out that the Ministry of Interior has a key responsibility when it concerns national issues said, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu is determined to secure the land and make Nigeria prosper, only if the needed peace is achieved.
While thanking the NSCDC for the extent they have gone in tackling Nigeria’s insecurity issues through impressive innovation, Tunji-Ojo said “The NSCDC is Nigeria’s first respondent and is very capable of relieving our already stretched military. This is what Nigeria really needs.”
He particularly cautioned Civil Defenders and other paramilitary personnel under the Ministry’s watch against abusing the rights of Nigerians, saying the uniforms they wear and weapons they wield are to defend the defenceless.
Dr Tunji-Ojo charged the Commandant-general of the Corps, Dr Ahmed Abubakar Audi, to continue to deploy his skills to evolve innovative ideas for officers and men.
Tunji-Ojo who was impressed by the performances of the various units of the Corps, hailed personnel of the Corps who won medals for Nigeria at various continental and international sports meet, announcing automatic promotions for two female medalists.
Addressing the personnel, the minister said; “I want to thank you for the thankless job you do and for the sacrifices that you make daily to ensure we sleep with our eyes closed. “I want to plead with you to treat Nigerians with respect in all you do. Being in uniform is not an excuse to abuse the rights of Nigerians. Treat Nigerians with respect.
“The female squad is novel within our clime and this is what Nigeria is about. This is the Nigerian spirit-innovation backed up with excellence. With the capacity that I have seen today, I know we are not too far from what we need to secure our country. We will give you the needed support and together we will build a security architecture that no level of insecurity can penetrate.
“In line with the Renewed Hope Agenda of this administration, we will not just be there for you, the government will have your back. Your job is very key and with proper efforts, harnessing your qualities and capacities, coupled with your capabilities, the simple truth is that we can reduce the way our armed forces are being stretched. I assure you that whatever is needed for you to succeed, the president is committed to it.
“Please take note of this – it is your responsibility to protect our critical national assets (CNAI) and infrastructure – our pipelines, mining sites, schools, hospitals, public buildings and everything that makes us who we are. We will do all in our power to ensure that these two African champions you have presented here are given automatic promotions.
“The era where performance and excellence were attenuated and perhaps some other factors were amplified is over. When you perform uniquely, distinctly and exceptionally, you will be recognized exceptionally. I have challenged your CG. You have wonderful ideas and programmes but it is time to walk the talk. The time for action is now”, he added.
Earlier, Dr Audi pledged the unalloyed loyalty of the officers and men of the Corps to the President Bola Tinubu administration. He said the Corps will continue to abide by the provisions of the Constitution, its Establishment Act and its Standard Operating Procedures (SOPS).
He prayed that the Corps will continue to wax stronger and remain a service of pride to the minister and to Nigeria at large.