Transborder crimes: ECOWAS structure inhibits WAPCCO optimising mandate – IGP Adamu

The acting Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, has tasked the Economic Community of West Africa Communities (ECOWAS) to upgrade the West African Police Chiefs Committee (WAPCCO) to a directorate in ECOWAS to enable the committee optimally attain its mandate.

Speaking at the 16th General Assembly of WAPCCO holding between May 14 to 16, 2019, in Abuja, he said:”I crave your indulgence to request you to address your minds to the objectives of WAPCCO in responding to the challenges of Insecurity in the West African region and their level of implementation and effectiveness within the context of the security dynamics of the region.

“I respectfully submit without pre-empting your minds that it will not be difficult to cone to the inevitable conclusion that the WAPCCO as currently situated within the broader structure of ECOWAS us inhibiting the ability of the body to optimally attain its mandate.

“It is, therefore, my humble suggestion that a review of the status of WAPCCO within ECOWAS secretariat has become evidently necessary. Consequently, it is suggested that WAPCCO be upgraded to Directorate in ECOWAS. This will Grant e the regularity of WAPCCO meetings thereby enhancing the dynamism and effectiveness of the committee.”

The acting IGP, who stated that the committee was established to provide platform for regional law enforcement corporation against crimes and security threats in the region, noted that the last edition on the meeting was held in 2014.
He said, “This gap has impacted on the ability of member countries to constantly and effectively review the security situation in the region and proffer solutions.”

speaking further, the police chief, who is also chairman of WAPCCO, said: “This meeting presents a veritable platform for members to review the level of implementation of recommendations at previous meetings and to exchange information needed to enhance security among member states.

“In addition, it shall act as an opportunity to share experience and best practices between law enforcement agencies within the West African sub-region on the one hand and INTERPOL on the other hand.”
Declaring the Assembly open, the Minister if Interior, Lt. gen. Abdulrahman Dambazau (retd.), said that security cannot be left to one agency alone hence members of the committee cuts across police, immigration services, drug law enforcement agencies, intelligence services as well as other internal security agencies related in crime fighting.

The minister, who maintained that idea sharing was part of efforts to improve the competence of agencies in fighting crime, expressed hope that the meeting will foster better relationship among the countries and agencies.

While stating that Nigeria places emphasis on training and retraining of officers in crime fighting agencies, he promised that Nigeria through the Ministry of Interior will continue to provide the needed leadership in transborder crime fighting.

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