In a decisive response to the escalating insecurity and kidnapping incidents in Nigeria, the Lagos State House of Assembly has urged the National Assembly to initiate an urgent constitutional amendment to facilitate the creation of state police forces. During a plenary session led by Speaker Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa, the Assembly also advocated for the enhancement of the Neighbourhood Safety Corps, a local security initiative designed to complement existing security agencies within the state.
Addressing the assembly under the banner of ‘Matter of Urgent Public Importance,’ Speaker Obasa highlighted a recent kidnapping event in the Ikorodu area, emphasizing the overstretched state of the nation’s security apparatus. “At the weekend, we heard of the attack on a commercial bus and the passengers abducted,” Obasa recounted, underscoring the urgent need for a more localized policing approach.
The call for state police has been a recurrent theme from the Lagos State Assembly, with Obasa stressing the importance of not delaying constitutional amendments until the twilight of the National Assembly’s tenure. “This administration is at the beginning of its four years. So the National Assembly should begin the amendment now,” he advocated, proposing that measures be put in place to prevent potential misuse of state police by governors.
Furthermore, the Speaker suggested allocating a specific portion of the Security Trust Fund to bolster the Neighbourhood Safety Corps, alongside implementing youth engagement strategies, such as sports, to address the root causes of insecurity. “Poverty – in this period of rising inflation – we can continue bringing relief to our people. Sports has been a very effective tool to take our youth away from crime,” Obasa noted.
Members of the Assembly, including Hon. Aro Moshood from Ikorodu Constituency 2 and Hon. Ajayi Oladele of Ibeju-Lekki Constituency 2, echoed the call for heightened security measures and the need for proactive steps to accommodate the influx of people into Lagos. Hon. Nureni Akinsanya of Mushin Constituency 1 also emphasized the necessity of equipping the Neighbourhood Safety Corps to effectively counter the threats posed by insecurity and kidnapping in the state.