The Minister of Interior, Dr Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, has set up a 13-man committee to carry out the needs assessment of the nation’s borders.
This is contained in a statement by the Deputy Director of Press and Public Relations in the ministry, Mr Afonja Ajibola, on Saturday in Abuja.
He said Tunji-Ojo set up the committee tagged: ‘Integrated Border Governance Committee’ during a presentation on border management and control by a consultant in Abuja.
Afonja said that the minister instructed that the committee should endeavour to have a robust deliberation and create an implementable border management plan to secure the country.
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The committee which is composed of people drawn from the ministry as well as its agencies, has 18 weeks to conclude its assignment.
The committee has the Director, Joint Services in the ministry as the Chairman; Director, Planning Research and Statistics and the Director, Legal.
Other members include the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), the Federal Fire Service (FFS), the Border Community Development Agency, the Community Boundary Commission and its consultant.
The minister painted a scenario of Nigerians at borderlines attending schools in the neighbouring foreign countries.
Tunji-Ojo said that the loyalty of those Nigerians would naturally be with the foreign countries, adding that how then would anyone expect Nigeria to achieve the desired security?
“It is high time the country stopped paying lip service to border management. I, therefore, converse that enough budgetary allocation be made available for the provision of social infrastructure,” he said.
The minister added that enough budgetary allocation must be provided to these contiguous border communities to enable them to have a sense of belonging.