The Northern Governors Forum on Wednesday said contrary to some misconceptions in some quarters, it is not against the recent scrapping of the defunct Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).
Chairman of the forum and Plateau State Governor, Simon Lalong made the clarification in Kaduna during the inauguration of a committee on Youths and Civil Societies.
“The Northern Governors Forum is not against the disbandment of SARS as misconstrued in some quarters. We rather caution against the blanket condemnation of the police that can erode the confidence and zeal of the hardworking and honest ones in performing their duties of protecting lives and properties,” he said.
Governor Lalong also reiterated the commitment of the forum to tackling the several challenges facing the region.
For the governor, the forum will collaborate with Federal Government and security agencies to address the issues of banditry, terrorism, kidnapping, and other criminal activities.
“We must tackle the current challenges of insecurity in the region which is dominated by insurgency, kidnapping, banditry, rape, child abuse and trafficking and other conflicts.
“We shall continue to work with the Federal Government and security agencies to tackle crime and criminality. That is why we have supported a comprehensive reform of police architecture in the country,” he said.
Speaking further, Lalong said the committee has a responsibility of creating a robust and conducive environment for the youths to flourish and tackle the current security and economic challenges in the region.
The committee is headed by the Emir of Zazzau, Alhaji Nuhu Bamali, and has the Minister of Women Affairs, Pauline Tallen, and representatives of youths from the 19 northern states and FCT, religious groups, and civil societies as members.
The committee’s terms of reference include working out various ways of engaging the youths in the north at all levels, prioritize different programmes for youth development and identify and develop different platforms for youth inclusion in the governance in Nigeria and the north in particular.