The Executive Secretary of Tertiary Education Trust Fund, Prof. Suleiman Bogoro, says criminals are using ungoverned spaces across the country to unleash terror on law-abiding citizens.
He also said criminals are using the ECOWAS Protocol on free movement to infiltrate into countries to commit crimes.
Bogoro made this known on Wednesday while presenting a topic on “Combating Ungoverned Spaces in Nigeria” at the 18th Convocation Lecture of the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA) in Kaduna.
According to him, most criminals elements terrorizing the country finds it more easier to operate in areas that are ungoverned.
He called for the training and retraining of military personnel with modern technology in order to combat infiltration of porous spaces and borders.
According to him, the Federal Government should review the country’s security architecture, including the ECOWAS protocol which allows freedom of movement, as terrorists mostly cross borders to unleash terrors.
“Once ungoverned spaces are identified and criminal elements identified, there will be peace.
“Government should also map out frameworks for infrastructural development by building good road networks; government at state and local level should also complement the federal government’s efforts.
“When all this is done, the criminals will find the ungoverned spaces unattractive.”
Bogoro, who said there could not have been a better time to speak on ungoverned spaces than now, commended the Federal Government for closing borders across the country.
“The Federal Government has at the moment closed its borders. There wouldn’t have been a better way to deal with the insecurity, in my own opinion, it is very commendable,” he stressed.
He stressed that smoking out criminals from hideouts in the ungoverned spaces requires the use of technology.
By the time the NAF goes all out, such terrorist elements will know it is difficult to overthrow a legitimate government,” he added.
He said, “A number of people are confused about what uncovered space is. They narrowed it only to security.
“But today, more issues are related to ungoverned space which includes development issues, challenges of poverty, infrastructure, inequality gap, youth-related issues, cross-border terrorism, infiltration of criminals, immigrant and among others.
“All this has forced the government to take measures, which includes recent the shutdown of our boarders.
“The National Security Adviser has been speaking about ungoverned spaces. These are places where a number of miscreants are hiding,” he added.
Bogoro also pointed out that more inclusive governance and government that provide security for citizens, infrastructures, education and rights to all would tackle the problem of ungoverned spaces.
On his part, the Guest of Honour, Maj.-Gen. BM Badewole (Rtd), a former Registrar of NDA, charged the armed forces to work harder to enforce combat effectiveness so as to tackle the threats posed by ungoverned spaces.
Badewole encouraged good leadership within the armed forces and called for the provision of state – of – the – art equipment that would inspire and motivate soldiers to fight.
Also, the Commandant NDA, Maj.-Gen Oyebade, stressed that NDA has always tried to push the boundaries of excellence that will continue to contribute meaningfully to the socio-economic development of Nigeria.
Oyebade disclosed that the Cadets and postgraduate students passing out, have been grounded in the fields of science, technology and arts to continue positively to development of the country.