Benue State governor, Mr Samuel Ortom has appealed to the federal government to grant licence to responsible citizens to carry sophisticated weapons such as AK-47 that will deter criminals from attacking innocent and helpless Nigerians.
The governor, who made the appeal in a presentation during the virtual meeting convened by Centre for Values in Leadership (CVL) in collaboration with Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF), also recommended that the embargo on employment be lifted in order to take Nigerian youths off the streets.
In a presentation titled, “Insecurity and Governance Challenges in the New Normal”, the governor suggested that such policies should be backed by a strict legal framework to prevent illegal possession of arms by the citizenry without exception.
The governor also recommended adequate funding of security agencies and continuous training of their personnel to enable them be abreast of global dynamics in the fight against insecurity.
“Governments at all levels must come to terms with the fact that insecurity is a real threat to the development of the country and be willing to sincerely tackle the menace,” he said.
Ortom also appealed to the federal government to embrace ranching which is the global best practice of animal husbandry and enact a law to end open grazing, which has consistently led to attacks on farmers by armed herdsmen militia.
He advocated for improved educational standards and enhanced public enlightenment campaigns to give the people, particularly youths, the needed orientation to shun negative acts and become more patriotic citizens.
While calling for the repositioning of National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) through training, funding and logistics to successfully confront drug barons and peddlers, the governor said the move would stop illegal drugs from coming into the country and circulating.
He called on the federal, state and local governments to show greater commitment in developing the agricultural value chain to generate more job opportunities for Nigerians.