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Agriculture

From Rediscover Nigeria desk

  AGRICULTURE   The wealth of a nation is partially measured by its ability to guarantee its citizenry food security.In…

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Manufacturing

From Rediscover Nigeria's Desk

Manufacturing in Nigeria concentrates mainly on the production of consumer goods. With a population estimated today at over 156 million…

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Nigeria! Overview

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Tourism in Nigeria has huge potentials to be a major foreign exchange earner. The Obasanjo administration has created awareness among…

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Nigeria's Resources

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Nigeria's total verified external debts as at December 2010 was US$4.578 billion as against US$3.947 billion in 2009. Total scrutinized…

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Rediscover Nigeria Security and the Armed Forces

Security and Armed Forces

Nigeria is as safe as any other country on earth.  Security concerns are an international problem today.  Therefore no nation can point at another as being unsafe.  The unfortunate events of September 11, 2001 in the United States of America and the London explosions of 7 July, 2005 along with series of terrorist bombings in other places affirm that all nations must join hands to promote collective global security.  Acts of terrorism have also recurred in many other parts of the world and Nigeria is not excluded.

Prior to 1999, the Nigeria Police Force was inadequately equipped and was grossly short of personnel. As a policy over the past three years the Force has been recruiting and training new personnel every year.   Its capacity to respond to crime has thus significantly improved even though there is still room for improvement.

However, no nation on earth not even the most developed is crime free.  The prevailing atmosphere in Nigeria is peaceful. Compared to many countries in the sub-region and other developing countries, Nigeria has demonstrated a great capacity for internal resolution of crisis. A lot more needs to be done to strengthen internal security arrangements especially to nip in the bud potential conflicts and organized crime. Through improved intelligence and communication, most criminal activities can be prevented.  Collaboration and intelligence sharing with security agencies of other nations can abate the spread of terrorism and crime.  The world has become on global village and no nation is insulated from negative developments.  Nigeria has been quick to react by taking pro-active measures to curb this menace.  The nation's security forces have been swiftly deployed to hot spots.  While there remain isolated incidents of security breaches, the country remains largely safe.

The Amnesty Programme initiated by the Federal Government recorded a very huge success. Virtually, all the armed groups voluntarily laid down their arms and accepted to undergo rehabilitation and re-integration into the society. The Federal Government has followed up with skilled and semi-skilled training in various institutions locally and abroad to prepare the militants for gainful employment in the nation.

The immediate effect of the amnesty programme reflected in the upward swing in oil production in the Niger Delta. While oil export nose-dived to less then 1million barrels per day, in the heat of the agitation, it has since picked up to more than 2.4MBPD.   Oil production platforms that were closed down have resumed full production and the Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) Plant in Bonny is able to meet up with supply contracts. Kidnapping of foreign oil workers which was at its peak during the years of agitation have now ceased. Oil prospecting has also resumed in areas where they were abandoned. The issues that led to wide spread agitation are gradually being addressed.

The oil companies that were largely accused of being unprofessional and unethical in their operations which led to massive degradation of the environment have become more sensitive to the needs of the local communities. Confidence is being re-built and partnerships with local communities have increased.  The region has a brighter future for integrated development now than ever before.

Government has equally stepped up effort in handling the emergence of other groups in other regions of Nigeria especially the “Boko Haram”. The option of dialogue is open while security operations to forestall other incidences of detonation of bombs in public places have continued.

The United Nations has commended Nigeria for the measures it took after the bomb blast in the United Nations building in Abuja in August 2011. Following the spate of security breaches in Nigeria, Benin Republic and Niger (which are Nigeria's immediate neighbours) along with other Economic Community of West Africa States (ECOWAS) have resumed cooperation in curbing crime, circulation of some arms and intelligence sharing. The civil wars which took place in Liberia, Sierra-Leone and Cote d’Ivoire led to the proliferation of arms in unauthorized hands in the sub-region.

THE ARMED FORCES

Nigeria has one of the most disciplined Armed Forces in Africa.  Tested in battle and reliable in peace keeping, it has the requisite experience and has continued to provide security for the country.  Nigeria has peaceful and friendly relations with her neighbours and remains a big brother in the region.  She has continued to be her brother's keeper through support for neighbouring countries.  Through negotiation and concession, Nigeria signed an agreement under the auspices of the former United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Anan, to relinquish the Bakassi peninsula.

The World Court in the Hague had earlier ruled in favour of Cameroun over the maritime boundary while Nigerian won considerable concessions in its land boundary dispute with Cameroun.  This brotherly spirit was extended in support of democracy in Niger Republic, Cote d'Ivore, Guinea and Cape Verde and in support of Libya.

PEACE KEEPING

But for the early intervention of Nigeria, most of the sub-region of West Africa would probably be engulfed in conflict today.  At great pains to the lives of her armed forces personnel and with great strain on the economy, Nigeria committed huge sums of money to maintaining peace in neigbhouring brotherly countries of Liberia and Sierra-Leone while the world watched as acts of horror were being perpetrated in these countries.  Nigeria may never receive adequate recognition for these heroic acts of intervention in what would have turned the sub-region into a big theatre of war.

The peace keeping effort of Nigeria dates back to the Congo crisis in which she intervened successfully in the early 60's.  Others are the civil war in Lebanon, Chad, Somalia and the crisis in Cote d'Ivoire, Gambia and Sao Tome.  Almost all Southern African nations owe their liberation to the positive intervention of Nigeria and the logistic support of Nigeria's armed forces to the liberation movements especially in Mozambique, Angola, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe.

Key in the Security efforts is the step up of operations in Intelligence gathering which has paid off.  The nation is returning to normalcy and economic activities have picked up in the areas that were direct theatres of conflict.

 

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Last Updated (Friday, 23 December 2011 22:25)

 
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