Senate Summons Wike, FCT CP over Insecurity

Sunday Aborisade in Abuja

The Senate yesterday summoned the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Nyesom Wike, and the FCT Commissioner of Police, Benneth Igweh, over insecurity.

The Senate said the invitation had become necessary to enable both Wike and Igweh to brief it in a closed session concerning the spate of security breaches in the FCT and measures being taken to address the menace.

The red chamber also observed a minute silence in honour of those killed in the territory by bandits and kidnappers.

The resolutions of the Senate followed its consideration and adoption of a motion titled: ‘Galadimawa kidnap incident and need to urgently enhance security measures in FCT, Nigeria’.

The motion was sponsored by Senator Ned Nwoko (PDP -Delta North).

The Senate, by the motion, also urged the Inspector-General of Police (IG) to see to the installation of CCTV cameras in strategic locations within and around Abuja, highways, and other major capital cities across the country to bolster surveillance and deter criminal activities.

Apart from this, the lawmakers called on the IG to urgently increase security patrols and surveillance within Abuja and across the country to proactively combat and prevent further kidnap incidents.

The Senate mandated the Committees on Defence and Police to recommend robust strategies to prevent future kidnappings within FCT.

It also called for the recruitment of more police personnel to bolster security forces’ capacity to combat kidnappings and other criminal activities effectively.

It equally called for the provision of adequate mobility resources for the police to enhance their ability to respond swiftly to security threats and conduct patrols effectively.

The federal lawmakers further resolved to call on the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) to urgently ensure the functionality of dedicated emergency numbers for police, ambulance, and fire service emergencies.

The Senate said doing so would enhance swift response to security and public safety incidents.

The chamber, therefore, urged the police to dedicate a three digit emergency number for effective emergency response.

Nwoko, in his lead debate, said on November 23, 2023, the Senate vide a motion resolved that security agencies should fortify security and address the surge of kidnappings in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

He said the Senate also noted  that the resolution was prompted by the tragic abduction of 19 individuals, including his own Senior Legislative Aide, Chris Agidy, in Galadimawa, Abuja.

Nwoko said the Senate was aware that “upon receiving the distressing news, he took immediate action and promptly contacted the FCT Commissioner of Police, Igweh, who swiftly activated the O.C. (Officer in Charge) anti-kidnapping team to secure the release of those abducted.

He said: “The FCT Police Command operatives conducted a successful operation on February 24, 2024.”

Acting on reliable intelligence, he said, they raided Sardauna Forest in Toto, Nasarawa State, and apprehended Samaila Wakili Fafa, also known as Habu Ibrahim, a notorious kidnap kingpin who has long eluded capture and has been on the Command’s wanted list.

He said the suspect admitted that his criminal syndicate orchestrated and carried out numerous kidnappings in the FCT and its surrounding areas, including the abduction of Agidy, and Mr. Sunday Yahaya Zakwai, the district head of Ketti Village.

Nwoko said the gravity of this situation has only been compounded by the revelation of Agidy and others’ untimely demise at the hands of these abductors, and their remains recovered and deposited at Gwagwalada Teaching Hospital mortuary for medical assessment.

The motion further read: “Cognizant of the Police Force efforts who displayed unwavering dedication and determination in pursuing kidnappers – the Inspector-General of Police, Kayode Egbetokun, the FCT Commissioner of Police, Benneth C. Igweh, who personally led the team into the forest in search of the bodies; CSP Mustafa, the officer in charge of Anti-Kidnapping, and CP Victor, the Divisional Police Officer of Utako, along with courageous police officers.”

Senators in their contributions supported the motion and approved the prayers when they were put to voice vote by the Senate President, Godswill Akpabio.