Security of lives and property is one of the major assignments of government all over the world, be it a despotic, hegemony, monarchial, military, diarchy, ancient or modern democracy. It is one of the essential expectations of the electorate from an elected government as dividend of democracy. As a matter of fact, it is the assurance of security that endears citizens to pay homage and give loyalty to a community or state, whereas a state of insecurity creates numerous fears in the inhabitants of a state or country and prompts such persons to seek asylum and security in safe havens. Thus political leaders, industrialists, developers, educators, researchers, innovators and inventors can only be or thrive in a conducive and secure atmosphere.

In order to provide such seriously needed security of lives and property, government at all times and at all levels spend huge resources, spend serious time to recruit, train and employ able-bodied, qualified, skilled, educated men and women with vocation, zeal, devotion and love with respect to the future to take charge of the security affairs of the state.

As at today in this country with cases of insecurity all over the country,including Boko Haram insurgents, militants, armed bandits, Fulani herdsmen, kidnappers, cultists, human traffickers and various criminal security challenges, the traditional security agencies thus the armed forces and police seem to be handicapped, hence they are calling for all hands to be on deck. They have since observed that security is everybody’s business.

However, with myriads of security challenges facing the South East states including Imo, the necessity and urgency, a militarized security outfit becomes a sine qua non. One of such security outfit set up by the Imo State government, is the Civil Guard. It is an outfits that was established by an act of the Assembly and requires certain criteria, physical, academic qualification, mental alertness, prowess, bravity and patriotism.

Recently, the Governor of Imo State, His Excellency, Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha, appointed an astute young devoted, educated and calculated gentleman as the Acting Commandant General of the Civil Guards. The Governor in his usual practice had followed and taken time to search and meticulously appointed the Acting Commandant General, who the public expects may soon be confirmed substantive position to head this sensitive security organization, which duty is paramount to provide safety and security and conducive environment in the state capital and our rural communities given the prevailing security challenges in the state which cannot be handled alone by the federal security outfits.

The new Acting Commandant General, who is not a novice nor a new name in the task of security provision, is Dr. Martins Ekeh, who had been in the service of Imo Civil Guards for fourteen years beginning in 2005, when he served as the Owerri Zonal Commander, spanning through 2007, when he rose to the rank of Assistant Commandant,then Deputy Commandant in 2011, Commandant In 2013, only to be appointed Acting Commandant General in 2019.

Apart from his long experience in the service of the state, the Acting Commandant general has all the other required academic and professional qualifications having bagged a B.A degree in History from the University before proceeding to the prestigious Lagos Business School for his Post Graduate studies. A graduate of Nigeria Institute of Public Relations(NIPR), Mr Martins Ekeh, has also in his kitty, Masters Degree in History and International Relations from Imo State University Owerri, from where he finally bagged a Doctorate Degree (Ph.D).

Apart from his excellent academic records, the Acting Commandant General has gone through the drills of the nulls to arm himself with enough professional skills, to prepare himself sufficiently for the job ahead. In 2005, he attended a course in Contending Crime, Conflict, Conflict Prevention, Resolution and Management in a Democratic Dispensation. Later that year 2005, he attended another two courses on Youths as catalysts for Social and Economic Development and in 2006, he attended a course in Intelligence Gathering and Surveillance Services and a year later in 2007, he attended a course on Road Safety and Enforcement of Traffic Laws through the use of Mobile Courts. Also in 2008, he attended a course on the Use of Legal Aid to Solicit Freedom of Innocent Inmates and to crown it all in 2009, he also attended a course on Reducing Crime through the Prevention of Drug Abuse –A Case study of Early Child Care.

It is strong belief that armed with the foregoing qualification, training and skill, Ekeh, is capable and ably qualified to superintend over the affairs and management of Imo Civil Guards, which major operations and spheres of security jobs have to deal with Imolites and their government, to provide safety and security.