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February 23, 2024

ONSA, NSCDC to strengthen protection of critical national assets

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By Sumaila Ogbaje

The Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corps, on Tuesday met to validate a new policy for the protection of critical national assets and infrastructure.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the participants are to review the Draft Critical National Assets and Infrastructure National Protection Policy and Strategy (CNAI-NPPS 2023).

The National Security Adviser (NSA), retired Maj.-Gen. Babagana Monguno, said the meeting was to ensure the full implementation of all aspects of the National Security Strategy.

Monguno was represented by the Principal General Staff Officer, ONSA, Maj.-Gen. Abubakar Ndalolo.

He said the document was being presented to relevant stakeholders to enable them make observations and inputs to facilitate seamless implementation of the document when approved.

“As we know, the survival and security of every nation and the quality of life of its citizens largely depend on the functionality of its critical national assets and infrastructure.

“Any attack on these assets and infrastructure will have adverse effect on national security.

“Contemporary concerns for the security of national infrastructures became more prominent in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attack on the United States.

“Since that gruesome attack, the United States and many other countries have taken necessary steps to identify critical national assets and infrastructure with the aim of designing appropriate policies and strategies to secure them.”

He added that the UN Security Council Resolution 2341 placed premium on countries to prioritize the protection of critical national assets and infrastructure.

Monguno said Nigeria had since 2009 suffered immense loss of lives and properties due to activities of terrorists and other criminal elements across the country.

He said the document had identified and sectorised Nigeria’s critical national assets and infrastructure domain into 17 sectors, as well as prioritised their protection into three broad areas.

The areas according to him are Lifeline, Life support and Life enhancing sector groups.

He said that the document being validated explained in detail how to achieve the prioritised protection of the critical national assets and infrastructure.

The NSA said this was necessary as various criminal and terror groups in Nigeria sometimes attack assets such as schools, mosques, churches, hospitals, bridges, power towers and telecommunication masts.

He added that clashes between farmers and herders as well as inter-ethnic group conflicts also pose major threats to the country’s assets and infrastructure, as well as food security.

Monguno however said that the deployment of kinetic and non-kinetic methods by the government had considerably succeeded in protecting and safeguarding national assets and infrastructure.

“Nonetheless, there is the need to develop and continuously review measures to address dynamic threats to our infrastructure.

“Let me reassure you that ONSA remains committed to partnering with all relevant stakeholders in achieving lasting peace and security in our country,’’ Monguno said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, senior level officers from relevant MDAs and security experts, among others, were part of the validation meeting. (NAN) (www.nannews.ng)

Edited by Maharazu Ahmed

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