#EndSARS: Osinbajo’s committee begins work

• To seek controlling power for govs over security

The National Economic Council (NEC) Ad-Hoc Committee set up to engage with youths, civil society organizations, and different strands of leadership across the nation in the wake of the recent protests has commenced work.

Led by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, the committee’s action is furtherance of the resolution of an emergency meeting of NEC last week.

The committee met on Tuesday at a meeting presided over by Osinbajo, where it decided to promptly embark on a two-pronged engagement process: Zonal and State-based respectively.

The engagement will include meeting with security agencies to seek more controlling power for state governors over them as the chief security officers of their states.

According to a statement by the Vice President’s spokesman, Laolu Akande, in Abuja, for the state-based engagements, each of the 36 State governors and FCT Minister would meet with the leadership and representatives of the identified groups in their states.

It said this would then be immediately followed by zonal interactions where the Vice President and members of the committee would feature.

The engagements will not only include youth groups but also traditional, religious and political leaders. Civil society groups would also be involved as well as opinion moulders like the media.

The interactions would feature issues around employment, social safety nets and national unity and security of lives and properties among others.

The statement added that Tuesday’s meeting attended virtually by all governors representing each of the six geopolitical zones in the country also formally adopted terms of reference including to engage representatives of youths, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and others, political, religious and traditional leaders on employment and social safety net programmes among other issues’.

To engage with the security agencies and develop ways of delivering more control to state governors who are the chief security officers of their states.

To recommend effective solutions to the rising divisiveness and propose ways of strengthening national unity;

To develop a framework for the coordination of action steps to be taken by both the Federal and State Governments in response to the fundamental issues underlying the #EndSARs protests;

To co-opt and or invite any individual or corporate body that may facilitate the work of the committee; and report to council with such recommendations as may be considered appropriate.

The statement recalled that last Thursday after more than four hours of deliberations at an emergency meeting of the NEC, it was resolved that the deeper reasons behind the #EndSARS protests and its fallout should be addressed by both the Federal and State Governments.

Members of the NEC ad-hoc Committee on Public Engagements are Vice President Osinbajo, who is the chairman; Governors Aminu Tambuwal (Sokoto), Babagana Umara Zulum (Borno), Abubakar Sani Bello (Niger), Rotimi Akeredolu (Ondo), Dave Umahi (Ebony) and Ifeanyi Okowa (Delta).


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