The South East Governors Forum has rejected the Community Policing programme of the Federal Government as communicated by the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu.
The Forum’s Chairman and Governor of Ebonyi State, Chief David Umahi, disclosed this while briefing newsmen on the outcome of their enlarged periodic meeting held at the Enugu State Government House, Enugu on Sunday.
The seven-point communique read out by Umahi bordered mainly on issues of security, economic development of the zone as well as infrastructure.
The Governors observed that the IGP’s programme pattern as communicated to the forum contradicted his earlier agreement with the Governors and leaders of the zone, a development which informed their decision to jettison the programme.
They called on Adamu to, as a matter of responsibility, revert to the content of the initial agreement.
The Forum, therefore, agreed that all States Houses of Assemblies in the zone should commence proceedings towards enacting security laws in line with its agreed security programme.
The Forum, however, did not reveal the content of the IGP’s letter to them as to the composition of the programme.
Umahi announced: “On security: on community policing, the recent communication from the inspector General of Police to the Governors of South East on community policing composition is not in keeping with the agreement we reached with him during his last meeting to the South East
“In the circumstances, we cannot begin implementation of it until the programme reflect our earlier agreement with the IGP.
“The South East Governors and their leaders ask the IGP to please revert to initial agreement reached on community policing here in Enugu.
“The Forum agreed that all South East states House of Assembly should commence the process of enacting State Security laws in line with South East security programme.”
On re-jigging the economy of the zone, the Forum agreed that Governors should set up committees in their various States to work with the Federal Government, World Bank, Central Bank of Nigeria and the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority economic programmes mainly in agriculture, solid minerals as well as Small and Medium Enterprises.
The Forum also agreed to have Ohanaeze Ndigbo come up with a comprehensive working document on stabilisation fund programme for Ndigbo, which it should submit to the Forum at its next meeting to further strengthen the economic development and integration of the zone.
The Governors further agreed to meet with the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Mele Kyari, for the linking of all State capitals in the zone with gas pipeline in line with the Federal Government’s pipeline programme running from Imo State to Lagos State.
On the ongoing rehabilitation of Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu, Governor Umahi noted that the Chairman of the Committee, Chris Okoye, briefed the Forum on the progress of work, over which he expressed optimism that the Airport would soon be opened for operation subject to COVID-19 regulations of the Federal Government.
The communique on that note commended President Muhammadu Buhari and other key players for the Airport and for funding the construction of the Second Niger Bridge, which has reached advanced stage.
The enlarged meeting was attended by the Governor’s of Ebonyi, Enugu and Imo States, while those of Abia and Anambra State were represented by their deputies.
Also in attendance were the President-General of Ohaneze Ndigbo, Chief Nnia Nwodo; and the Chairmen of Traditional Rulers Council from the five South East States.