The National Conference sitting in Abuja on Thursday broke a generational jinx with a resolution that henceforth, any state of the federation desirous of having a State Police Force can establish, fund and control it.
This resolution, when enacted into law would put to rest the long debate and controversies over the establishment of state police. The state police when established by states that desired them are to compliment the efforts of the Nigeria Police Force.
The areas of jurisdiction of the Federal police will cover the entire country and on clearly spelt out matters and offences while the jurisdiction of the State Police will cover the state and operate within the laws enacted by the State Assembly.
The conference also resolved that in addition to establishing state police, states laws should also provide for community policing. The decisions were made while considering the report of the Committee on National security.
The Conference agreed with the report of the Committee that state governors should be involved in the running of the Federal Police in their respective states. It was also agreed that officers of the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police in the Federal Police should be deployed to their states of origin.
It was reasoned that this will address the concern of language and culture, as this group of officers actually constitute the operational component of the force.
To make the police more people friendly, the conference called for the amendment of section 214 of the 1999 constitution so that The Nigeria Police Force will be called The Nigeria Police.
A proposal for the establishment of a National Border Patrol Force to secure and protect the nation`s border was also approved by the conference. The Border Patrol Force is to be domiciled in the Ministry of Defence.
In mapping out security architecture for the country, the conference accepted the proposal for the creation of a Security and Intelligence Services Oversight Committee (SISOC).
The committee is to be composed of a retired Chief Justice of Nigeria as chairman, a former head of the Civil Service, and a former Director General of the State Security Service or National Intelligence, as members.
Similarly, the conference also accepted the proposal for the establishment of Water Way Safety Corps to man the waterways and riverine areas. The corps is expected to perform similar functions as that of the Federal Roads Safety Corps (FRSC).