By Inyang Bassey
Minister, NIger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, has reiterated the importance of collaboration among the relevant security agencies for the achievement of national and international peace and development.
The Minister stated this while receiving in courtesy, members of Course 15 Executive Intelligence Participants of the National Institute for Security Studies (NISS), led by the Deputy Commandant and Director of Studies, Didacus Egor Egbeji, at the Conference room of the Minister’s office on Tuesday.
A statement signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Jackson Udom, quoted the Minister as saying,” you cannot talk about security without collaboration among the various security agencies. There must be synergy among states that share same boarders within Nigeria and countries we share same boarder with. We need local, state, national and international collaborations for security.”
Akpabio commended the Institute and its Management, particularly, on the choice of the Theme; Global Climate Challenge: Prospect And Priorities for Economic Development and Conflict Resolutions in Africa, saying, ” the Institute has grown. I saw it from its founding stage.
“The topic of the Theme is very apt. Climate change and desert encroachment in the Lake Chad region has led to reduced economic activities in the region. The closure and shrinking of the Lake has led to conflict because of blockage of livelihood of some people. The outcome of your studies, I believe, will lead to finding a lasting solution to the problem.”
Akpabio admonished participants to take the course serious noting,” it is a course you all must take serious and your findings implemented for national peace and development.”
The former Senate Minority Leader, informed the visitors of the successes recorded under his leadership in the ministry, to include but not limited to, “the establishment of SIWP to monitor projects executed in the region by various government agencies to avoid duplications.”
He further hinted of moves by the Federal Government to give legal teeth to deal with any of the International Oil Companies (IOC) who fail in its statutory obligation to oil producing communities, stressing that,” a law that will compel IOCs engaged in oil exploration and exploitation in the NIger Delta Region has already passed Second Reading in the House of Representatives. It is expected that after the Bill is passed into law, there would be sanctions and punishments for any defaulter.”
Earlier in his speech, the leader of the team, Didacus Egbeji, intimated the Minister of the importance of the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs to their study. ” We are here today to listen to you and to also learn how you and your team have been able to salvage the boisterous situation in the region.
“The situation in the region and how you have been handling it is very germane to our studies. In the course of our studies, we would be expected to embark on local, state, national and international tours to countries like South Africa, Gabon, Kenya, Malaysia, South Korea, Japan and China among others to also see how they deal with their environment and related issues.”
He disclosed that,” at the end of the course, all the participants would be expected to write projects that would be defended, after which, they will graduate, if found worthy in learning and in character.”