By Angela Atabo
A Civil Society Organisation (CSO) on Mental Health and Drug Demand Reduction (CiSMHeDDR), has called for a proactive approach by security operatives to fight insecurity in the country.
Mr Prosper Okafor, National President of the group made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Sunday, while reacting to persistent cases of kidnapping and other acts of insecurity in parts of the country.
He called on the country’s security operatives to embrace a more proactive technique rather than a reactive approach in the fight against insecurity.
Okafor said that his group had a lot to offer and that they were willing and ready to contribute more in the aspect of mental healthcare, drug and substance abuse which he identified as one of the key drivers of crime and insecurity.
“The best way to nip insecurity in the bud is by deploying proactive approaches that include intelligent information gathering networks,” he said.
Okafor said that CiSMHeDDR with over 1,500 member organisations spread across FCT and the 36 states, could be effectively deployed to enhance security if supported by the government and other stakeholders.
He said that it was not enough to always respond or react to acts of insecurity but very beneficial to prevent it through proactive measures and techniques.
The civil society advocate, who identified insecurity as a time bomb, said that it was better not to allow it to detonate before taking actions.
Okafor, who is also the Founder of Crusade for Greater Nigeria on Poverty Eradication and Social Matters (CFGN), an NGO, blamed the increasing rate of poverty in the country for the insecurity, which he said had scared investors away.
He commended President Bola Tinubu’s efforts in tackling the monster of insecurity and appealed for an unusual way of battling the menace.
“I wonder why and how our security operatives cannot trace the kidnappers through calls, in synergy with the mobile network companies.
“I can’t believe that kidnappers cannot be apprehended after making a series of calls across to the relations of their victims, with the same line,” he said.
Okafor, however, called on Nigerians to collaborate in the fight against insecurity, saying that security should not be left for the government alone.
“We cannot leave the fight against insecurity to the security agents alone but we should deeply be active in it,” he added.
Okafor said that he had initiated a unique security initiative called FCT Enhanced Security, Crime and Accident Prevention Program (FCT ESCAP) to aid national security networks.
He explained that the initiative would help immensely if extended to the 36 states, recognised and supported by the appropriate authorities.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the spate of kidnapping and banditry increased in Abuja, with many innocent persons falling victim. (NAN)(www.nannews.ng)
Edited by Maureen Ojinaka and Emmanuel Afonne