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Punishing arm-bearing criminals’ll reduce insecurity- Prof Nyong

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By Joseph Kingston, Calabar

A Professor of petroleum geology and high chief in the palace of the Obong of Calabar, Prof Eyo Etim Nyong, has submitted that insecurity in Nigeria could reduce if all manner of arm-bearing criminals were arrested, prosecuted and punished in accordance with the country’s extant laws so as to serve as deterrent to others.

In an interview with our reporter in Calabar, Monday, Prof Nyong feared that with perpetrators of crimes allowed to have a field day kidnapping, raping, killing and maiming with impunity, other jobless young men could be attracted to crime thereby making the situation worse.

 “I am a bit disappointed with the way all these security challenges are being handled. The security institutions need to be overhauled and strengthened. Criminals are arrested on a daily basis and paraded but how many of those paraded had been sent to jail?

“When criminals, violent people and those parading our cities with AK 47 in the name of herdsmen, kidnappers and armed robbers are arrested and punished properly, crimes will reduce.

“People committing these crimes seem to be going free, what makes you think that other vulnerable youths would not be attracted to crimes when those who were said to have been arrested are seen back in the streets. This makes crimes to become attractive to other youths? It is like it has become an open door for criminality.

“Secondly, we need to build a proper relationship with our neighbouring countries. Why is Nigeria a playground for all criminals to invade with impunity? The number of people parading with illegal arms has become very threatening and is worrisome. The Police and other security agencies are seeing these guys carrying arms, yet nothing is done to curtail such excesses.

“People are attaching politics, ethnicity and religious sentiment to the situation, but this is not proper because it incites. If the security intelligence are properly managed, this anomaly could be detected and stopped,” the consultant and registered petroleum geologist under the Council of Nigerian Mining Engineers and Geosciences, stated.

Prof Nyong advised youths perpetrating insecurity to get proper education or acquire specialized skills to keep them busy, adding “when the level of education is poor, you’ll expect crime to rise.

“Even if you go to school, try and acquire some skills. When all other things fail, the skill you acquire will not fail because joblessness is real. We need to revise our school curriculum to bring in concepts that address current needs of other areas of the economy.”

He also laid part of the blame on parents who he said were abandoning their parental responsibility of bringing up their children well so that they would become good members of the society and not canon folders in the hands of criminally-minded individuals.

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