By Kelechi Ogunleye
Abuja, Oct. 21, 2020 The Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) has reinforced the deployment of personnel to protect the nation’s critical infrastructure and assets.
The NSCDC Public Relations Officer (PRO), Mr Emmanuel Okeh, made this known in a statement issued on Wednesday in Abuja.
Okeh quoted the Corps Commandant-General (CG), Mr Abdullahi Gana, as giving the directive for the emergency deployment, following the ongoing #EndSARS protests in some parts of the country.
Gana, who noted that the protests had taken a dangerous dimension, said that the directive was with immediate effect.
“I have directed all the state commandants to immediately reinforce deployment of personnel to all strategic critical infrastructure and national assets, located in their respective states,” he said.
The commandant-general charged the state commandants to take the assignment seriously by immediately issuing standing order for beefing up security around government assets in their respective states.
“This is through the deployment of more men to man these infrastructure and assets, and provision of 24-hour security and surveillance in order to prevent destruction and sabotage.
“This is to forestall any act of vandalism, arson or destruction of these critical assets by miscreants who may want to capitalise on the ongoing protests in most parts of the country to perpetrate their sinister motives.
“This must not be allowed to happen, because it is not in the interest of anybody at all to destroy our collective wealth.
“The turn of event has called for more vigilance around critical national assets and infrastructure, which have become endangered at this critical period.
“Reports at my disposal have exposed some criminals in the guise of protesters, planning to attack some major government assets in some parts of the country,” the commandant-general said.
He reminded the corps’ personnel of the need for them to exercise high-level professionalism and restraints, as they would be working with other security agencies in restoring peace in the country.
Gana advised them to remain civil in dealing with the public and warned strongly against accidental discharge or forceful suppression of peaceful protesters.
He further appealed to citizens, especially the youth, to remain law-abiding in their demands for reform in some areas in the country.
The NSCDC boss advised them to go about their legitimate plea without taking laws into their hands.
“Our youths should give peace a chance and toe the path of dialogue to resolve their grievances, as there is no better time than now to stand down on the protests, especially now that it has been hijacked,” he said.
Gana further assured Nigerians of their safety and security, as they go about their legitimate businesses, even as he urged them to provide information on any suspicious movement within their vicinities to the NSCDC.