The upgrade of the Department of State Security Service (DSS) Institute for Security Studies following President Mohammed Buhari assent to the National Institute for Security Studies Establishment Act, 2019, has given impetus to the fight against crime in the country especially in the face of growing security challenges. CHIZOBA OGBECHE writes.
The Department of State Security Service (DSS) has the mandate to protect and defend the country against domestic threats, to uphold and enforce the criminal laws of Nigeria and to provide leadership and criminal justice services to both federal and state law enforcement organs.
The Department continues to adapt to various roles necessitated by evolving security threats in the country including insurgency and terrorism.
In a bid to take the lead the Department through a Bill for an Act to provide for establishment of the National Institute for Security Studies (NISS), Abuja, for the administration and management of the institute and determine the standard of knowledge and skill to be acquired by the personnel of the institute for related matters, sought for the upgrade of the institute.
Establishment and objective of the institute among others include: “to be a leading centre for the provision of competence and enhanced training for middle and top level managers of security in order to advance the best practices in the conflict prevention, mitigation and resolution;
“contribute uniquely and viably, to the promotion of inter-service, inter-agency and international cooperation, collaboration and harmony among intelligence, security and law enforcement agencies locally and globally in order to achieve national security, regional and global peace;
“serve as a critical centre for research and dialogue where distinguished academics, policy initiators and implementers meet to cross-fertilise ideas on national and global security issue;
“add critical balance and objectivity by providing timely, empirical research and contextual analysis of relevant security issues to policy makers, area specialists, advocacy, groups, and the media;
“provide senior security and law enforcement personnel with skills and capacity for strategic management; as well as provide strategic and critical security training for key public officials from within and requesting nations.”
To also, “award the certificate of fellow of security institute (fsi) to the institute’s executive intelligence management course participants; be a centre for the award of postgraduate diploma and degree in the field of intelligence and security management;
“collaborate with universities or similar institutions which share its objective in the achievement of global peace; and promote or undertake any other activity not inconsistent with this Act and is calculated to help achieve the objectives of the institute.”
Following President Mohammed Buhari assent to the NISS Establishment Act, 2019, the Institute for Security Studies (ISS) was upgraded to the NISS and has been placed at par with the National Institute of Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS), and the National Defence College (NDC).
Addressing the journalists on the implications of the Act, the spokesperson of the DSS, Peter Afunanya, who said it took the extra effort of the Director General of the service, Yusuf Bichi to actualise the assenting of the bill, disclosed that the Bill was first sent to the National Assembly in 2018 but was not signed into law until the coming of Bichi as DG.
While reiterating the fact that the Act places the institute at par with other security institutions, he said NISS would collaborate with them to ensure adequate security in the country.
He said the Act for the establishment of the NISS, under the administrative control of the DSS, however, gives the institute financial autonomy.
According to him, “the SSS is the leading institute in research into types, trends, patterns, methodology, and typologies into criminal behaviour, criminal activities, modus operandi, psycho-analysis, profiling of criminals affecting the internal security of Nigeria.
“In addition to any other of security interest, the institute shall focus on terrorism, insurgency, subversion, espionage, and sabotage as basic threats to Nigeria’s internal security.”
Afunanya said, “The institute would award participants on completion of their programme the designation Fellow of Security Institute (fsi), and the certificate awarded shall be at par with the certificate awarded by the NIPSS and NDC.”
Speaking on the functions and powers of the institute, he said the institute shall have the powers to: “conduct courses for middle and top-level policymakers and executors drawn mainly from the security and law enforcement agencies, nationally and globally, including civilians from related institutions to broaden their security outlook and mainstream human security perspectives into public policy processes in order to influence and guide decision-makers within Africa and beyond;
“enter into collaborative venture affiliate with; establish linkages with other institutions within or outside Nigeria for the purpose of building capacity and in the institute.
“participate in, initiate, and contribute to any research, formula, skill and or technique that will enhance national, global peace and security;
“receive endowments, donations including professional chairs from interested and philanthropic individuals or organisations who share the institutes’ peace and security objectives;
“elevate deserving Ph.D holders to the rank of Professors in their respective areas of specialisation; as well as develop and mount programmes on all activities which shall promote excellence in the institute.”
Also, “conduct other actions oriented programmes on ad-hoc or regular top level security and law enforcement and risk managers of the rank of directors (or its equivalent in the military and law enforcement services) with a view to promoting an understanding and exchange of views ideas and experiences and security defence and law enforcement matters;
“disseminate, by way of publication of books, briefings, policy papers, occasional papers, situation reports, consultations, monographs, conferences, lectures, web-based publications, expert workshops, seminars, policy briefs, roundtables discussions, training materials, courses, lectures, technical assistance, subject to internal quality control process regulated by the Board;
“award certificates on completion of courses which shall authorise a participant, upon successful completion of the programmes, to use the designate title of Fellow of the Security Institute (fsi), and the certificate so awarded shall be at par with the certificates awarded by the NIPSS, NDA and similar institutions worldwide;
“withdraw participants who, by their academic or moral conduct, the Board in its judgement, considers unworthy of the award of fellowship of institute.”
Similarly, “affiliate with credible and relevant universities on programmes leading to the award of Masters and Ph.D Degrees to qualified participants; regulate and guide courses and training certificates awarded at the state Security Services Academy or centres;
“Provide for a functional Public Relations Department that may promote its objectives, enhance collaboration and understanding, promote partnership and mutual assistance among similar institutes or organs, and promote or undertake any other activity which, is in the opinion of the Board, is calculated to help achieve the functions of the institute.