By Naomi Sharang, Abuja.
A Bill for an Act to establish the Nigeria Police Special Forces and the Nigeria Police Special Forces Training School. Gwoza, Borno State and its Governing Council has passed second reading at the Senate.
This followed the presentation of the lead debate on the general principles of the bill by the sponsor Sen. Mohammed Ndume (APC-Borno) during Tuesday’s plenary.
Leading the debate, Ndume said that the bill was read the first time in on Wednesday, Nov. 10, 2021.
Ndume, who is also Chairman, Senate Committee on Nigerian Army, said that the bill sought to combat the menace of terrorism, insurgency, banditry and other heinous crimes.
“It also seeks to train the required manpower for the special forces, in order to enhance effective national security through provision of professionalised training and knowledge.
“It will also award certificates to deserving and qualified officers on successful completion of training,” he said.
The senator said that objectives of the bill were to investigate all terrorism-related crimes and collaboration with other sister agencies in Nigeria and relevant international agencies on matters relating to terrorism.
“Engage in information and intelligence gathering activities, provide advanced training in anti-terrorism, drills, counter-insurgency, espionage and disorder management for serving police officers and other security agents from in and outside Nigeria,” he said.
Contributing, the Senate Minority Whip, Sen. Chukwuka Utazi, opposed the bill, arguing that it did not connect.
He said that there were existing police institutions in the country and other agencies charged with the same responsibilities listed in the proposed bill.
“I don’t see any reason why we will be bringing up this bill,” he said.
Sen. Smart Adeyemi (APC-Kogi) said that there was no amount of money or institutions that could be said to be enough in tackling the problems confronting the nation.
“We are passing through serious security challenges and all over the world, there are innovations and improvements in facilities and institutions of learning.
“We must move with the trend of development globally.
“Nigeria police deserve all the support that is needed. Not just in the area of establishing more institutions for them to be able to compete with other police forces across the globe but, indeed, even in their pay package,” he said.
Adeyemi said that there could only be effective policing when there were specialised institutions and adequate training for the police officers.
Deputy Senate President Ovie Omo-Agege, who presided over plenary, thereafter, referred the bill to the Senate Committee on Police Affairs for further legislative actions, while the committee was to report back in four weeks.