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Bombings in Nigeria: Group makes case for close circuit cameras

An Abuja based group, the Right 2 life Foundation has expressed concerned about the recent bombings  in Nigeria and called for the installation of close circuit television sets in major cities to stem the tide

The group in a statement by its Head Media & Communications Stella Anuforo urged the federal, state and local governments to take further steps to guarantee the security of lives and properties in Nigeria this new year.

 

Nigeria needs to be more creative in intelligence gathering as a tool to fighting crime. All over the world, the pattern of crime fighting has moved from physical presence of armed personnel to intelligence policing.

In line with what is obtainable in major cities of the world, we call on the federal government to issue a directive making it compulsory for closed circuit television cameras (CCTV) to be installed in all public places, major streets, churches, mosques, major roads, motor parks and all areas where people openly gather for activities.

While governments at different levels should ensure  total area coverage of major streets, roads, and public places, churches, mosques, hotels, recreation centres and other major buildings should be made to install such cameras to capture activities within and outside their premises. This way, it would be easier for security agencies to retrieve footages of criminality activities whenever such occur to aid investigations.

Reports have it that surveillance of the public using CCTV is particularly common in the UK, where there are reportedly more cameras per person than in any other country in the world.

According to an online encyclopedia, Wikipedia, “The exact number of CCTV cameras in the UK is not known but a 2002 working paper by Michael McCahill and Clive Norris of UrbanEye, based on a small sample in Putney High Street, estimated the number of surveillance cameras in private premises in London is around 500,000 and the total number of cameras in the UK is around 4,200,000. Research conducted by the Scottish Centre for Crime and Justice Research and based on a survey of all Scottish local authorities, identified that there are over 2,200 public space CCTV cameras in Scotland.

According to their estimate, the UK has one camera for every 14 people. The CCTV User Group estimate that there are around 1.5 million CCTV cameras in city centres, stations, airports, major retail areas and so forth. This figure does not include the smaller surveillance systems such as those that may be found in local corner shops.

This is the same scenario in most countries.

We are also calling for a special pay package for the Police. A journey through the country would reveal how utterly descanted policemen are in the discharge of their duties.

It is not surprising that these same officers get special accolades whenever they go abroad on peace missions and other activities. The extra bonuses they get at such foreign assignments usually boost their spirit and bring out the professionals in them.

Beyond equipping the Police with state of the art equipment, President Goodluck Jonathan should approve a special salary package for policemen and make them some of the best paid in the world. Nigeria has the capacity to do this.

Nigerians deserve a safer nation.