FG to partner ECOWAS States to establish WAPIS in Nigeria

Lt Gen. Abdulrahman Dambazau (retd.)

The Minister of Interior, retired Lt. General Abdulrahman Dambazau, says the Federal Government will continue to collaborate with ECOWAS-member States by creating an enabling environment for the establishment of the West African Police Information System (WAPIS) in Nigeria.

Dambazau, who gave the assurance in a statement issued by the Acting Director of Press of the ministry, Mrs Grace Njoku, on Tuesday in Abuja, said that the establishment of WAPIS was to combat trans-border crimes.

Njoku said that Dambazau stated this when the Executive Director, Interpol Police Services, Tim Morris,led a delegation from WAPIS to the Ministry to seek the federal government’s support to establish WAPIS in Nigeria.

Dambazau said that the place of partnership in tackling the menace of cross borders crimes frontally could never be overemphasised.

This, he said, would provide an opportunity for sharing of data, improvement of communication system among member States and other strategic partners such as the European Union (EU) in the fight against the threats.

He said that Nigeria alone covered about 60 per cent of the region’s population and as a result, always witnessed an influx of people in and out of its borders, necessitating such collaboration between it and other ECOWAS-member States.

The statement quoted Dambazau as describing the project as not only ambitious but extremely important.

It also quoted Dambazau as saying that the challenge of drug and human trafficking as well as global terrorism would soon be reduced to the barest minimum with the funding being given by the European Union (EU) and the support of ECOWAS.

The statement said that Morris explained that the creation of a WAPIS developed by ECOWAS was aimed at checking the globally organised crime and terrorism affecting the region.

Morris said that this was occasioned by the security gaps at national, regional and international levels that had contributed to West Africa being seen as a hub of crimes.

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