Nigeria has so many security agencies with a very different mandate for each of them. Each of these agencies works in different ways to ensure the peace and safety of the country.
In this article, we will be looking at the roles and functions of the State Security Service (SSS), popularly known as the Department of State Services or DSS.
The Nigerian State Security Service (SSS) also known as The Department of State Services (DSS) is a security agency of Nigeria and one of the three successor organisations to the National Security Organization (NSO).
The agency is under the Federal Ministry of Defence of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
It’s main responsibilities are within the country. These include; counter-intelligence, internal security, counter-terrorism, and surveillance as well as investigating some other types of serious crimes against the state.
It is also charged with the protection of senior government officials, particularly the President and Vice President with their respective families, and state governors.
DSS agents are federal agents with the power to arrest, carry firearms, serve arrest warrants, and perform other law enforcement activities. When assigned to domestic field offices, DSS Special Agents investigate passport fraud and visa fraud, and protect visiting foreign dignitaries.
The Responsibilities or Roles And Functions Of DSS/SSS In Nigeria
One of the primary responsibilities of the agency is to protect the elites of the country. By elites, we mean the top politicians at the state and federal levels.
When it comes to gathering intelligence within the country, the DSS is always recommended for an optimum result as they have sophisticated tools to aid them in the job.
Some of the Functions of State Security Service include but are not limited to;
- Protecting and defending the Federal Republic of Nigeria against threats within the country irrespective of the scope.
- Upholding and Enforcing the Criminal laws of Nigeria according to the constitution.
- Providing Leadership and Criminal Justice Services to both Federal and State law enforcement organs.
- Protection of the following persons in the country; The President, Vice President, Senate President, Speaker of both state and Federal house of representatives, State Governors, Immediate family members of those elected into high political position, Past presidents and Vice presidents of the country and their spouse, Visiting foreign heads of state and government, Presidential candidates and their vices and other persons that they may be called unto to protect.
- Counter-terrorism and Counter-insurgency.
- Depending upon the country’s need for security, the SSS may be called upon anytime to perform a security role for the optimum safety of the country.
Naturally, one might think the DSS mandate should be curtailed where there are distinct bodies tasked with dealing with that element of internal security but the DSS have shown ruthless efficiency in tackling matters which other agencies drag their feet on.
This has justified the view that while other security institutions are so corrupt that they require outright restructuring to function competently, the DSS can quickly execute Presidential orders.
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