Eid-el-Fitr: Nura Khalil make case for enduring peace, security,stability,unity in Nigeria
By Engineer Nura Khalil
Assalamu alaikum. Taqabbalallahu minna wa minkum. May Allah (SWT) accept all our good in the just concluded Ramadan and forgive all our shortcomings.
As we celebrate the Eid al-Fitr, I would like to share my random thoughts which have occupied my mind since the bright morning of Wednesday, the 5th day of May 2021. My 59th birthday on mother earth. These thoughts are geared towards the establishment of a new Sustainable Social Security Order in the midst of uncertainties, fear, resentment, cynicism, mental exhaustion, elite cruelty and missed opportunities as a panacea to an enduring Peace, Security, Stability and Unity in Nigeria.
These thoughts are particularly addressed to the Executive, Legislature at both States and Federal levels and to the Judiciary with the hope that, they will be looked at and acted upon with utmost sense of responsibility for the good of Nigeria and Nigerians.
1. Immediate establishment of a Presidential Task Force for the completion of Dangote Refinery and other projects of Critical National Importance (CNIP).
2. Resuscitation of the National Peace Committee led by His Excellency, Gen. Abdussalami Abubakar.
3. Establishment of a Presidential Task Force for the Compilation of Imported Goods with a value of USD 10million and above for the purpose of prioritization under the Federal Governments Import Substitution Programme to immediately reduce our foreign dependency through local production.
4. Representation and prompt passage of an amended Bill for an Act to Establish the Sustainable Development Fund charged with the Responsibility for imposing, operating and Managing of the Fund for the Attainment of Sustainable Development Goals in Nigeria; and for Related Matters. (Bill No. HB. 17.01.910). The Bill has earlier passed the Second Reading and was billed for Public Hearing during the 8th National Assembly.
The Fund is a Self Help or Crowd Funding by Nigerians foe the prosperity of Nigerians. The object of the Fund shall be to provide for the identification, funding and execution of programmes and projects for the attainment of sustainable development initiatives to end hunger, poverty, gender inequality, provide clean water and sanitation, quality education, good health and well-being, clean and affordable energy, climate remediation, decent work and economic growth and the rehabilitation, reconstruction, modification, expansion and or provision of critical infrastructure and national asset.
The need and urgency for the Fund is justified by a number of reasons which include the following:
4.1 Huge resources and substantial investments which cannot be covered by annual budgets are required to urgently intervene and address the socio-economic development challenges in a transparent, coordinated and sustainable manner as was done in respect of the widely acknowledged successful PFT intervention programme.
4.2 The government’s development agenda would be better supported by the Sustainable Development Goals, which seek to end extreme poverty, hunger and inequality, build resilient infrastructure and economic growth with job creation.
4.3 The Sustainable Development programme would have direct and faster impact on the generality of Nigerians who massively voted you and your party and have sustained their hope and aspirations for better standard of living as well as are confident of your ability to achieve same.
4.4 The proposed structure provides a better and efficient vehicle to coordinate the SDGs office and similar agencies to ensure effective transition to the Sustainable Development Programme.
5. Review and Presidential Assent of the Bill for an Act to Repeal the National Housing Fund Act CAP N45 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria (LFN) 2004 and Enact the National Housing Fund, to make Provisions for Additional Sources of Funding: and for Related Matters (Bill No. HB 1077). Public Hearing was conducted between 12-13thDecember, 2017. Bill was eventually passed by the 8th National Assembly and sent to the President for assent.
6. Constitution of a National Committee for Alternative Method of Funding Capital Projects to be constituted by the National Economic Council.
7. Establishment of National Social Security Agency to be headed by a Military Officer (similar to the NYSC) to supervise, monitor and discipline beneficiaries of all social security programmes under SIP, NDE, NISRAL, BATCs’ etc.
8. Conversion of NSCDC to State Community Police Commands under the control of Governors with clear legislation on States and Federal Offences.
9. Establishment of Courts of Appeal in each State of the Federation.
10. Decentralisation of the Supreme Court through the establishment of offices in each of the 6 Geo-Political Zones namely, South South, South East, North Central, North East, North West and South West.
11. Strengthening and empowering the National Identification Management Commission (NIMC) to establish a National Inter-Agency Information System. The system will collate, sort and clean the existing databases of National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), Federal Inland Revenue Services (FIRS), Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), Banks, FAAN, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Telecommunication Companies and the Nigeria Communication Commission (NCC) etc. New database such as School, Hospital, Birth registration etc. are also to be created.
The objectives of the database generated from the National Inter-Agency Information System shall be to provide:
11.1) Credible and trust worthy information to security agencies and first responders on real-time basis.
11.2) On the spot alert on the activities of a person on surveillance at the point of access.
11.3) Platform for gathering intelligence for counter-terrorism
11.4) Platform for building evidences during crime investigation
11.5) Enhance Inter-Agency cooperation
11.6) Ease of sharing information amongst security agencies (access to information is determined by level of security clearance which is assigned by the National Security Adviser).
11.7) Provide means for reporting on the spot assessment of crime scenes
11.8) Roll-out Biometric Identification System at Nigeria Embassies worldwide so that foreigners on terror watch list cannot pass through our borders.
12. Strengthen and accelerate the CBN Anchor Programme for self-sufficiency in staple food production for local consumption and for export.
13. Strengthen and accelerate the Presidential Fertiliser Initiative Programme (PFI) for self-sufficiency in local fertilizer production and for export.
14. Devolution of Power between the Federal Government and State Governments through the establishment of a Committee to review the exclusive and concurrent list contained in the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as Amended). This is to be followed by a review of the Revenue Allocation Formula to conform to the outcome of the exercise and new reality. This is an alternative approach to the controversial restructuring clamour in the country.
15. Holistic and robust measures to cut down the cost of governance in Nigeria. Cost of governance in the country has remained alarmingly high and therefore unsustainable.
16. Diligent implementation of the recently launched National Digital Economy Policy & Strategy (NEPS) with a view to accelerating and fast tracking the development of our digital economy. The second quarter report by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) for 2019 showed an impressive 13.85% contribution to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of Nigeria by the Information and the Communication Technology sector of the economy. This is a clear indication of the significance and importance of the sector to job creation and economic diversification of Nigeria.
Engr. Nura Khalil
To be continued….