By Abimbola Ogunnaike
The Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, has urged security stakeholders to safeguard Nigeria’s critical asset and infrastructure in other to ensure development of the nation.
Aregbesola made the call during the Critical National Asset and Infrastructure (CNAI) and the National Protection Policy and Strategy (NPPS) 2023 Validation workshop in Abuja on Tuesday, 9 May, 2023.
The Minister, who said protecting the country’s assets will ensure development of the nation, explained that because CNAI was diverse, stakeholders needed to brainstorm on the policies guiding it alongside how CNAI affected the duties of security agencies.
Aregbesola said there was need to checkmate the roles security agencies and stakeholders played in securing CNAI, adding that it was imperative to know how security agencies planned to implement the strategies guiding CNAI protection.
“We expect a fantastic outcome so, your contributions in this workshop must come out of your experience in areas we believe are critical to the well being and security of Nigerians.
“Whether with this government or the incoming administration, the Federation Executive Council will find out if this document has gone through critical evaluation and contribution before approval,” he said.
Earlier in his remarks, the Commandant General, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) Mr Ahmed Audi,, reiterated that the corps was the statutory lead agency in the protection of CNAI.
“Today’s gathering (yesterday) is aimed at completing the multi-stakeholder engagement process for CNAI-NPPS 2023.
“This document being presented for validation is in full compliance with the dictates of the aforementioned Security Council Resolution.
“We are taking bold steps to reform the legal and policy approaches for the protection of CNAI in alignment with national developmental aspirations, global trends and good practices,” he said.
Audi said that the document was an additional boost which could not have come at a better time considering Nigeria’s emerging security threats.
“We will strive to bridge this gap and threats to CNAI that takes us two steps backwards when we take one step forward.” he said.
The NSCDC boss further said that the agency would continue to effectively synergise with the Military, Police, sister agencies and other relevant critical stakeholders to adequately safeguard Nigeria’s heritage.
He urged participants to constructively criticise information in the document while productively inputting to collectively tackle insecurity.
Those present at the workshop include the representatives of the Office of the National Security Adviser, Ministries, Departments and Agencies as well as operatives of different security organizations.