A security expert, Dr Chukwuemeka Eze, has listed five major areas to focus on in order to solve the growing armed banditry and general insecurity challenges in Nigeria.
Eze, the Executive Director, African Network for Peace Building, Accra, Ghana, spoke on Thursday at the “Big Idea Podium” conference in Enugu.
Theme of the conference was: “Trend and Dynamics of Armed Banditry: Making Sense of the Problem.’’
It was organised by the African Heritage Institution (Afri-Heritage), and the Institute for Peace and Conflicts Resolution (IPCR).
Eze said that the Federal Government must rise up to show leadership and political-will in order to check the spillover of the current happenings in Nigeria to other countries in Africa.
According to him, to solve the problems, first, the Nigeria Government needs to re-examine all the existing strategies in confronting insecurity.
“Secondly, it should maximise the use of in-depth and collective dialogue to address all grievances of individuals and groups.
“Fix all known structural inequities and try as much as possible to create an egalitarian society with equal opportunities for all.
“Full involvement and collaboration with the locals as well as seeking their workable views on their local security challenges.
“Investing in local intelligence and working with the community leaders and influential persons,’’ Eze said.
He said that banditry could not be solved through guns being everywhere, but by the authorities and people taking and implementing some levels of responsibility.
“It needed synergy with all living within the country and with the government investing in modern intelligence gathering, security gadgets and equipment.
“Peace is a collective construct of all. Building peace also means investing in the future,’’ the security expert said.
Also, Dr Tswah Bakut, Director-General, Institute for Peace and Conflict Resolution (IPCR), Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said that banditry had become the greatest threat to peace and stability of the country.
“I believe this conference will come out with basic practical solutions to solving the security challenges confronting us,’’ Bakut said.
In his remarks, Prof. Ufo Okeke-Uzodike, the Executive Director, Afri-Heritage, said, “Our leaders should be able to provide answers to why security is failing daily in the country.’’ (NAN)