The National Economic Council NEC, on Monday outlined a detailed and comprehensive action plan to restore trust between government and Nigerian citizens, with the setting up of high powered committee headed by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo to interface with aggrieved Nigerian youths who are calling for an end to all forms of Police brutality
At the end of its virtual emergency meeting presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, the Council, made up the 36 State Governors and the Central Bank Governor, also agreed to embark on an objective framing of a new security and stability architecture for the country supported by the development of a framework for the engagement with the youth, civil society and religious leaders.
The framework will focus on pursuit of national unity, engagements with security agencies that will devolve more control to State governors who are the chief security officers of their states, federal support to provide compensation for those who have incurred losses in the last few weeks, as well as for social security to deal with the problem of unemployment and poverty in the country.
The Council however, stablished that economic issues underline what the country has gone through in the last few weeks, and resolved that good governance and improved service delivery remain the fundamental panacea to social tensions in the country, and social welfare must be given greater priority in the first instance.
The Council also reached a resolution that both the Federal and State Governments should address the deeper issues behind the ENDSARS protests and its fallouts.
Members of the committee selected to represent the six geopolitical zones include the Governors of Sokoto, Borno, Niger, Ondo , Ebonyi and Delta States.
The Council said the committee which will engage the youths, also include representatives of Civil Society Organizations, religious and traditional leaders on employment and social safety net programmes.
The Committee which was mandated to commence work immediately, will develop a comprehensive framework under the auspices of the Council that would coordinate joint actions and steps to be taken by both the Federal and State Governments to examine the fundamental issues underlining the protests and arrive at effective solutions, including how to enhance Nigeria’s national security.
The Council observed the low morale of security operatives during the period and resolved to commend the Nigerian Police and all the security agencies for their handling of what is clearly an unprecedented problem.
Noting that several members of the police lost their lives, the Council affirmed an unequivocal belief and assurance that most members of the nation’s security personnel are law-abiding and are capable of restoring law and order in the country.
It also supported President Muhammadu Buhari’s commitment to a complete overhaul of the country’s security services by improving the capacity of security officers across the rank and file while providing them with the necessary equipment to carry out their jobs effectively.
NEC enjoined the CACOVID leadership to come out with an independent statement on the status of the distribution of palliatives donated to States which should clearly explain the circumstances behind the delay in the distribution of food items domiciled in warehouses across the country
The Council which also reviewed the activities of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and other secessionist groups, and stressed that these subterranean and violent tendencies must be quickly addressed given that they have continually hijacked demonstrations and caused mayhem and lawlessness across parts of the country.
They decried the irresponsible use of social media in fueling misinformation and increasing social tensions.