By Chesa Chesa
The Federal Capital Territory Commissioner of Police, Mr. Bala Ciroma, has pledged the free movement of food and agricultural inputs into and across Abuja.
Ciroma gave the assurance during the inaugural meeting of the Joint Technical Task Team on the Emergency Response to Covid-19 on the Challenges of Free Movement of Food and Agricultural Inputs at the FCT Police Command.
The police boss, who was represented by Mr. Sunday Babaji, a Deputy Commissioner and in-charge of operations, urged members of the task force to see their membership as a call to national service during the Covid-19 crisis.
“Let me urge you all to see your membership of this task force as a call to national service in time of crisis-the Covid-19 pandemic. I assure the government that the police in the FCT alongside other security agencies will ensure the free movement of food and agric inputs so as to guarantee food security,” Ciroma said.
According to him, all Divisional Police headquarters have been mobilized to ensure that all those transporting foodstuff and other agric essentials are given priority on the road.
He also used the opportunity to warn motorists to avoid transporting contrabands with food and agric inputs as anyone caught will face the full weight of the law.
The joint task force was set up by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to amongst other things; work with relevant agencies in the states and FCT develop a window that will facilitate the free and unhindered movement of food, livestock and agricultural inputs without compromising the security and health of the nation.
To also issue out clear instructions to all the security personnel in the three internal security outfits; police, civil defence and the army, on the need to allow the free and unhindered movement of foodstuff, livestock and agric inputs to all parts of Nigeria.
Members of the committee include, Emmanuel Ogbeche, chairman, NUJ FCT; Mr. Ogboje Jairus, Assistant Commandant, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps; Yunusa Halidu of the All Farmers Association of Nigeria; and Yusuf Alabi representing the National Union of Road Transport Workers, NURTW.
Others are; Alhaji A. Umar of the National Association of Road Transport Owners, NARTO; and Alhaji M.G. Abdulrahman, representing the Ministry of Agric and Rural Development, who serves as secretary.