By Martha Agas
Rev Samuel Gorro, the Executive Director of the Centre For Peace Advancement in Nigeria (CEPAN), has tasked the governor of Plateau, Caleb Muftwang, on re-activating Operation Rainbow for improved security in the state.
Gorro made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Thursday in Jos.
NAN reports that Operation Rainbow is a homegrown security outfit established in 2010 to complement the police and Operation Safe Haven on peace building, providing security and addressing security challenges in Plateau.
He implored the governor to strengthen the security apparatus to enable it accomplish the mandate of which it was set up.
“Operation Rainbow should reactivate its early warning signals so that the governor would be kept abreast on what is happening in communities,” he advised.
He said that the outfit established to bridge gaps in community protection would be critical in addressing the lingering insecurity in the state.
He said that communities should also be trained on detecting early warning signals and appropriate responses to facilitate improved security in the state.
He said that the governor should have a virile security network cutting across multi sectors and non state actors for concerted efforts on ensuring sustainable security in the state.
“The governor needs to build security network where people are well equipped with knowledge on how to go about doing things. It would help them a lot,’’ he said.
He said that the Plateau Peace Building Agency, established in 2016, should be well equipped and have its independent budget to facilitate its smooth operation.
“They should have a separate budget to operate maximally,” he said.
He also urged the governor to ensure that traditional rulers would be carried along on issues of peace and security as the custodians of the people.
He added that traditional rulers should also be trained and equipped with knowledge and skills to respond to conflict and establish peace initiatives in their various domains.
The Peace expert also urged Gov. Muftwang to ensure that perpetrators of conflicts are arrested and punished to serve as a deterrent to others.
“Punish the perpetrator. Anyone arrested, no matter how highly placed, should be tried by the court of law and punished accordingly.
“Since 2001, we have not heard of anyone tried and punished that is why people are still involved in crime and getting away with it. They are making money out of it and many are becoming conflict entrepreneurs.
“Time has come that the government of Plateau should stand its ground that whoever is arrested should be tried. We can also learn from other states like Kano which has its own security apparatus,’’ he said.
He also urged the governor to work closely with security agencies in the state and hold regular meetings to be abreast with development in the state, saying ‘conflicts in the state are getting more complex and dynamic’.
NAN reports that Plateau has been embattled with security challenges since its sectarian crisis in 2001 and recently some villages in Mangu Local Area were attacked where many lives were lost and properties destroyed. (NAN)