Yoruba World Congress, an umbrella body for Yoruba nationals at home and abroad, has insisted the Western Nigeria Security Outfit code named Operation Amotekun can never be under the control of the Nigeria Police Force.
Prof. Banji Akintoye, the group’s President General said in a statement that its members align with resolution reached by Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State and his Oyo State counterpart, Governor Seyi Makinde, that Amotekun should not be subsumed under the control of the NPF.
The statement reads in part, “Amotekun, as rightly posited by the governors, is an independent security outfit necessitated by the clear danger of murderous herdsmen internationally accepted as terrorists, heartless bandits and sundry criminals who have turned Yorubaland into killing fields.
“It was also the failure of the existing security architecture to tackle the menace and secure life and property in the South-West region that led to the clamour for Amotekun by the generality of our people.
“It makes no sense, therefore, to put the same Amotekun under an organisation that has proved incapable and inadequate to provide the much-needed security in the first place.
“Putting Amotekun under the Nigeria Police hierarchy is a ploy to weaken it and sabotage the strident clamour of the people of the South-West for peace and security in their homeland.
“It must be noted that the entire South-West rose like one man to demand and support Amotekun and to resist all efforts to truncate its birth.
“We, therefore, see the efforts to twist the hands of Yoruba governors to whittle down Amotekun as a continuation of the same ploy to abort this regional security outfit.
“We also call on all Yoruba sons and daughters at home and abroad to stand up in support of Amotekun and speak out against efforts or plans to muffle it.”
Meanwhile, the Congress also announced the dissolution of its Interim Executive Committee, consisting of the 16 member secretaries and directors with immediate effect.
It indicated its resolve to inaugurate a four-man support committee to work with Akintoye pending its next convention when substantive officers would be inaugurated.
I Don’t Think It Will Work – Gov Akeredolu Kicks Against States Funding Community Police
Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo has meanwhile, rejected the motion that states should fund community policing in the country.
Akeredolu said the idea would not work, adding moves are underway for the Nigeria Governors’ Forum to table the matter before President Muhammadu Buhari for his intervention.
Speaking during an interview on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily last Wednesday, he said: “The burden of states will keep increasing. We will be the one that will fund community police. Where is the money going to come from.
“Except we devolve more money to the states, how will the states fund community police? I don’t think it is going to work,” he said.
“I am sure that they are taking this thing too far (that) governors will have to pay. We have argued this. They started by saying it will be voluntary, they are not going to pay.
“They now shift the burden on the state governors again. Are you increasing their allocation? Which state governor will accept that?
“I don’t know if other states will pay but we will not pay. Let us be fair to ourselves, we are running a federal system. We will sit down and discuss this because we have a President that has a listening ear.”
Reacting to his relationship with the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, the governor said it is cordial.
He however maintained that the issue between him the Deputy Governor of the state, Agboola Ajayi is out of ambition, stressing that Ajayi’s decided to exit the ruling APC to “where he belongs.”
Governor Akeredolu optimistic of victory in the October 10 governorship election in the state.
His remarks come two weeks after he inaugurated the pioneer officers of Ondo State Security network Agency Amotekun Corps.
While inaugurating the corps in Akure, the state capital expressed delight with the performance of the pioneer Amotekun Corps officers who just completed their training.
He urged them to put into good use all they were taught during training to ensure the security of life and property in the state.
While soliciting for more funding from the Federal Government to equip the police, governor Akeredolu said that the Amotekun Corps is designed to support the existing security framework in the state.
FG Approves N13.3bn for the take-off of community policing
Sooper had reported how federal government, last week, approved the sum of N13.3bn for the take-off of community policing initiative across the country.
This is as Garba Shehu, Presidential Spokesman said majority of the states agitating for community policing can’t even afford to pay salaries of their workers.
According to Shehu, the President’s concern for the sustenance of the community policing arrangement, was responsible for his delay of approval.
Shehu, who spoke Tuesday on Channels Television’s programme, Sunrise Daily, said “The essence of the government funding at this time is to do two or three things: one is to ensure training for those who are to be recruited to join the police service, two to enlighten the public about the functionality of the new system and three is to procure equipment. But above all is the need to streamline the processes embarked upon by the states and the sub-regions.
“As members of the community, we know ourselves better, we know all the nooks, the crannies, we know who is who and so, therefore, it is not difficult for intelligence to be supplied for effective law and order management in the community.”
Responding to a question on why it took the President some time to approve the community policing arrangement clamoured for by some states, Shehu said, “For President Muhammadu Buhari, the concern has always been about the spread and abuse of weapons in the hands of police.
“He said it repeatedly that, look a lot of the states that had clamoured for state police, many of them are unable to cope with salary payment. If you hire a community policeman and give him a gun, and keep him for five, six months without salary, what do you expect? Efforts have been taken so that situations of these kinds do not arise, so therefore, there is a standard national procedure and prescription for each of the states to comply with.”
The President’s spokesperson insisted that all other security arrangements by states would be governed by the dictates of the structure defined by the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu.
“Whatever name they go by, Amotekun or whatever, they will be streamlined and they will be ran in accordance with the structure as defined by the Inspector General of Police.
“They will be localised, they will be owned by local communities, they will be managed by them. You know, the constitution of the committee has been defined to include council chairmen, religious leaders, traditional leaders, civil society groups and all of that.
“They can choose their own nomenclature but it doesn’t make a difference. There is a general structure for all state and local council community policing mechanisms and this should abide in the state.
“So, we are going to have a single type structure community policing across the country and whatever is not in line with this, does not have a place in the new scheme of things,” he added.