Governor Simon Bako has informed the Nigerian Economic Summit Group that Plateau State remains a very suitable business and investment hub in Nigeria.
According to Lalong, the government has vigorously addressed some of the major security challenges by tackling their root causes. Lalong stated this at a panel discussion on “Securing our Future: An Urgency for Now” at the Transcorp Hilton Abuja. He hinted that even though the security challenges in Plateau State had not been completely eradicated, there was substantial peace which had been nurtured through the Peace Building Agency and the Inter-Religous Council in the last six years.
Lalong said most of the negative narratives about insecurity were exaggerated and also instigated by people from outside the State in collaboration with those within the State who want to make economic or political gains through violence. He said the state had addressed major issues that bordered on religion, injustice and ethnicity which were usually the triggers or fault lines exploited during any misunderstanding by groups or individuals.
This, he said, had been done through dialogue, consultation and collaboration where threats to security were addressed before they reached violent dimensions. Lalong added that the state had faced headlong acts of criminality through support to security agencies with equipment and other logistics for better response to security demands. He said Operation Rainbow had also stepped in to work with vigilante and other community watch groups to deal with the situation which had greatly improved.
Lalong used the event to advocate a review of the revenue sharing formula and creation of State police which must accommodate adequate funding, checks and balances and a very strong mechanism against abuse. This, he said, would enable the states to properly respond to security challenges as and when due.
Lalong cited the recently organised Local Government elections conducted peacefully in Plateau State as an example of the dividends of peace and security which was being consolidated upon. Lalong advised other states to replicate the Peace Building Agency which had proved to be very useful in addressing conflicts because it is backed by law.