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Security expert warns Nigeria against armed conflict with bandits

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By Praise Necherem

An American-trained computer scientist who specialises in security architecture in Anambra state, Dr Jeff Okeke, has warned that the war against insurgency, banditry and other violent criminal activities could not be won with arms and ammunition alone.

Okeke said that, for Nigeria to have fought the Boko Haram insurgents for over one decade, added to the recent banditry, without total success, spoke volumes about the neglect of digital security area.

He wondered why the war had lasted so long when there were technologies that could be applied, including drones to spot the enemies’ territory and deal with the situation once and for all.

He accused governments of using wrong hands and approaches to fight insecurity “when there are scores of knowledgeable Nigerians in security architecture that can easily proffer solution to the security problems holding the country on the necks.”

He was of the opinion that since the Boko Haram insurgents and bandits appeared to be wielding more sophisticated weapons, it would be suicidal to depend on firearms alone to decimate them. He said that government at all levels should engage digital security experts, if the war must be won.

“You are fighting insecurity and you are using gun in this modern technology. Boko Haram insurgents use more sophisticated weapons, from what we have observed, more than the security agents and they equally use technology to monitor the movement of the security agents or soldiers. These are the things government is supposed to use against them. Government should be ahead of them.

“We need to deploy adequate intelligence; we need to deploy adequate technology and modern equipment. Security agents should not run into their enemies and be slaughtered. I bet you these things can be easily sorted out with the right approach, ” he said.

On the security situation in Anambra, he said this could not be far from politics. Questions left unanswered, according to him, are where were the hoodlums coming from? How did these unknown gunmen enter Anambra state? He said government should find out how they entered the state.

“I think the Anambra state government acquired the necessary surveillance technology but they are not put in good use. With the kind of equipment he rolled out the day he launched the digital security, that is supposed to cover the entire Anambra. The movement and activities of people should be dictated and perpetrators of such crimes as happened recently can be arrested under 12 hours not even 20 hours. The state should have mounted the equipment to cover the entire State. This is a security matter and more experts should be involved to get it right, ” he noted.

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