The Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Mr. Nyesom Wike, says President Bola Tinubu has been given approval for the emergency procurement of digital tracking tools to track kidnappers.
Wike, who made the disclosure at a media briefing on Monday in Abuja, said lack of tracking equipment in the past led to the recent unpleasant upsurge in the spate of banditry and kidnapping.
He told newsmen:”With the emergency procurement approval by the president, the story would now change.
“So many facilities were not provided. Vehicles for the security agencies are not there. You cannot believe that the equipment to track criminals is not there.
“When anything happens, they go back to the Office of the National Security Adviser or to the Force Headquarters. That is not the way it is supposed to be.
“When I was the governor of Rivers State, the DSS told me they wanted particular equipment. We were the only state that had it then. In fact, sometimes the headquarters asked for its use.
“That is special equipment they needed, and that equipment—we know how expensive it is—we had it, and that was able to help us reduce the level of crime. It was able to track the specific phones. It can track a particular phone to the exact spot or room.
“So, what we have done with the approval of Mr. President giving us approval for emergency procurement is that we have been able to identify what each of the agencies needs, and we will be able now to provide them.
“Again, before we came on board, the police had said that they had requested the procurement of a certain number of motorcycles where vehicles could not get to the remote and mountainous areas. Unfortunately, they were not provided, but we are going to do that now.
“Security is not just these equipment. You also have to motivate the personnel. I don’t want to talk about the strategies because we are talking about security now.
“The basic thing is that having identified all these, and the security agencies have told us this is what they require, we had to do the needful. We have even gone further to ask the state director of DSS about what they would need to tackle this menace.
“What kind of equipment do you want? Not that if anything happens, you have to run to your headquarters to seek assistance.
“The minister said while the FCT Administration cannot set up its own security agency like the subnational entities, it would, however, establish a joint task force with a full command and control structure as well as relevant equipment to be able to respond in cases of security emergencies.
“The next thing is to set up a joint security outfit here where they have their own structure and equipment so that if anything happens, the task force will know it is their function to move in.
Yes, it will cost us some funds and it will take us some time, but what is important is that we have identified that this is a lacuna that we have to cover,” Wike added.