Daily Trust (Abuja)

27 November 2012

Africa: South Africa to Help Improve Nigeria's Internal Security

The South African government has expressed its readiness to help Nigeria improve its internal security.

A delegation comprising top members of the South Africa's ruling party, African National Congress (ANC), the Peoples Democratic Party of Nigeria and South African

Business people held a meeting with the Minister of Interior in Abuja to kick-start the negotiation process.

The leader of the delegation, ANC Treasurer, Matheous Phosa said his country was concern about the internal security situation in Nigeria and have decided to help

replicate in Nigeria, what was achieved in his country.

Nigeria has been struggling with internal security challenges in recent years with the Boko Haram insurgence, effective management of Prisons and border routes topping the list.

The proposal

The Executive Chairman of Guma, one of the South African leading Security consultants and Information Technology Telecommunication companies, Robert Gumede

said Nigeria has nothing to lose in the deal.

"What we are here to discuss is to expose Nigeria to the technologies that we have that have been successfully implemented and are operating in several countries

including South Africa at this moment."

He said the company had design "home-grown technologies in South Africa that helps to register population, movement control of visitors, issuance of birth and death certificate, managing the life span of citizens of the country, systems that manages disasters during unfortunate occurrence."

Mr. Gumede added that: "We also operate privately managed prisons that we finance, design, construct and operate, working hand in hand with government ministries.

We are looking at those opportunities to see if we can be able to foster a relationship with Nigeria bringing some of these tried and trusted systems, in a way of doing business, so that we can enhance service delivery to our people."

Financing the project

The South African said Nigeria had nothing to worry about in term of financing as a financial regime had already been designed in order to relief the burden on the

country.

"We also know that most countries don't usually have access to capital. So, one of the things we put on the table is our ability to manufacture and supply security

systems that we can finance to assist ministries like Ministry of Interior here in order to be able to equip its staff members to be able to enhance security of

citizens in Nigeria.

"We are business people. We are here to expose our capabilities and our commitment to partner with Nigeria in bringing cutting edge technologies with us providing

financial supports but ease the pressure on the government.

Its a matter of supplying equipment on loan basis but also making sure that the loan that we provide are IMF compliant so that they are not going to be a burden to the country."

He said the financing system had already been deployed in other countries both within Africa and other continents.

Transformation Agenda

Responding, the Minister of Interior, Abah Moro commended the efforts ANC had made over the years in South Africa and its willingness to foster a relationship with the ruling party in Nigeria which he said, had so much in common.

He noted that the present administration was determined to reform the country's internal security system, acknowledging that the partnership was well timed.

The Minister however lamented that reforming the Prisons in Nigeria had been his greatest headache, noting that "more than 80 percent of inmates are awaiting trial."

While stating that a meeting would be arranged in later date to discuss the proposal in details, he expressed optimism that the South Africans could help improve

Nigeria's internal security system.

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