By Friday Idachaba, Lokoja
Kogi State Government has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Chinese investors for the provision of high technology security control architecture to capture movements in and out of Kogi State.
Abdulkareem Siyaka, Chief Executive Officer of Kogi State Investment Promotion and Public Private Partnership Agency, Siyaka disclosed this at the opening of a two-day interactive workshop.
The workshop on “Kogi State Mission Critical Support System: A 21st century integrated smart state/security architecture”, was held in Abuja.
Siyaka said that a lot of work went into the conceptualisation and design of the project which he described as “First-of-its-kind” and expected to gulp about 60 million U.S. Dollars ($60m).
He added that the concept and its implementation aimed to decimate terrorists, bandits and other criminal elements that might want to infiltrate Kogi and its neighbouring states.
He said that in sealing this laudable security control deal, all stakeholders, including the Army, Department of State Services, Navy, Police and local vigilantes, among others, were carried along.
Siyaka said that a Chinese firm, Hytera, would handle the investment deal which is expected to greatly improve the state’s economy while also grinding insecurity to halt in Kogi State as well as across adjoining states.
He noted that the project was expected to create over 685,000 jobs and attract over N591bn investment yearly, while also encouraging migration to rural areas in the state,
Siyaka added that a 5G licence had already been acquired by the state from the Nigerian Communications Commission for the operations.
“We are putting the whole state on the map, real-time, virtual, audio and visual, so as you enter Kogi State from anywhere, even though the bush, we will see you.
“I won’t go into too much details because of the sensitivity of the architecture. But the components will be manned by a command/control centre.
“The idea is that the moment you come into the state, we will see you; if you’re driving, if you’re walking, you have metal, if you’re talking, we will be able to pick it and then if you do something wrong, we will be able to intercept you using our field personnel on the ground.
“Our boss, His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Kogi State, is futuristic in everything he does. He is not a leader that jokes with the security of the state. That is why we are Number One in that area today.
“He knows that, to develop Kogi State, he will need to be ahead of criminals by using artificial intelligence, by using super crime fighting infrastructure.
‘We are bordered by 11 states we don’t have control over, so the best way to immunize, to arm ourselves is to go into this kind of project”, Siyaka said.
Governor Yahaya Bello, while declaring the workshop open, said that the project would be driven by 5G network and a 30 Megawatt gas-powered electricity plant to be built by an American company.
Bello said he was confident that the project would not only ensure a safer Kogi State, but will improve economic and infrastructural development, greatly.
“There cannot be any meaningful development without adequate security. We are a serious government ready to harness every of our resources for the benefit of our people.
“We will continue to do our best. We have received several awards in terms of providing safety and security for our people. That is a call to do more and we will do more.
“I want to assure the people of Kogi State that to my last day in office, I will continue to cooperate with all our law enforcement agencies and our citizens across board to make sure we fight these criminals to a standstill”, the governor assured.