Mass abduction: Akande urges Tinubu to confront national insecurity challenges head-on

President Bola Tinubu with Laolu Akande (inset). FILE PHOTOS

By Emmanuel Babafemi

• Calls on religious leaders to dissuade banditry

• Asks President to investigate alleged sabotage among security formations, enhance inter-agency coordination

• Articulates three-pronged approach to confronting insecurity

Amidst escalating concerns over the persistent insecurity plaguing Nigeria,
former presidential aide, Laolu Akande, has urged President Bola Tinubu, to confront the nation’s escalating security challenges head-on with decisive action and enhance inter-agency coordination.

Akande, a veteran journalist who is the host of the popular talk show “Inside Sources” on Channels TV, gave the charge on Friday, March 15, opening his programme with “My Take” segment, speaking against the backdrop of recent security breaches, including the mass abduction of school children in Kaduna and numerous incidents of kidnapping in Sokoto and Borno states.

Pointing to recent legislative efforts, including a Senate resolution to engage with President Tinubu and security chiefs on the issue, Akande expressed disappointment at the lack of tangible progress following such initiatives.

He urged elected representatives to prioritize their duties and refrain from distractions that hinder collective efforts to tackle insecurity, emphasising the urgent need to dismantle silos within government bodies to facilitate seamless collaboration in addressing security threats.

Akande also highlighted the role of religious leaders in dissuading perpetrators of violence, urging them to not only pray but also speak out against acts of terror.

He reiterated the importance of moral leadership in advancing national interests and fostering unity in the face of adversity.

In a candid address to the nation, Akande acknowledged the longstanding nature of the security challenges, attributing them partly to the failure of previous administrations to fulfil promises made to the people. Despite refraining from placing excessive blame on the current government, Akande stressed the imperative for swift and effective action.

He emphasized the imperative for Tinubu, who had declared his intention to prioritize security reforms and foster collaboration among relevant government agencies.

Drawing parallels between Tinubu’s administration and its theme of renewed hope, Akande stressed the significance of tangible action in transforming rhetoric into reality.

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He highlighted the urgent need for Tinubu to engage with stakeholders, including security experts, civil society organizations, and regional leaders, to formulate comprehensive strategies for combatting insecurity.

Central to Akande’s message was a call for Tinubu to prioritize inter-agency coordination, citing the detrimental effects of disjointed efforts among security forces.

He urged the president to bridge existing gaps between law enforcement agencies and governmental bodies, emphasizing the critical role of effective collaboration in addressing complex security challenges.

Addressing allegations of collusion and a lack of coordination among security agencies, Akande called upon President Tinubu to confront these issues head-on and ensure thorough investigations are conducted, articulating a three-pronged approach to confronting insecurity.

He said, “Number one. The allegation of collusion. Mr. President, please confront this. And if you have started, continue to confront these. There has to be a proper investigation of these things, and then it ought to be dealt with. We don’t need collusion. Number two, the security agencies and the Red Bank government bodies should stop working in silos.”

“This is an embarrassing lack of effective coordination. I think the president himself identified that publicly. It must stop. No one should be working in Silos at this point among our security agencies and all relevant government bodies.

“Mr President must make it happen. He must ensure that the allegations of collusion are sorted out. He must ensure the security agencies and our relevant bodies coordinate effectively. It can be done.

“The third thing is to give the salvage teams a timeline to deliver once their needs have been met. Let all hands be on deck. This security crisis should be seen because it is indeed for us all as a government and the people an existential threat, and we shall rise to the equation and quell it because we can,” Akande said.

In addition to his focus on security, Akande addressed broader concerns surrounding governance and accountability, calling for transparency and accountability in all spheres of leadership.

In his address, Akande emphasized the resilience of Nigerians in the face of adversity, stating, “Tough times don’t last but tough people like Nigerians do,” to underscore the enduring strength and determination of the Nigerian populace amidst challenging circumstances, appealing to them that the country will overcome its challenges.