By Olabode Richard Olatunde, Akure
📸 Nguher Gabrielle Zaki
…Says Thuggery, Criminality shall not be tolerated in the forthcoming election
Governor of Ondo state, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, has assured the people of the state that no criminal element shall trouble the relative peace enjoyed in the state, as the Ondo State Security Network Agency (Amotekun Corps) begins operation .
The Governor stressed that with a workable synergy among the leadership of the security agencies and that of Amotekun, a water-tight strategies capable of arresting crimes even before they occur would be deployed.
Akeredolu spoke at the Passing-Out Ceremony of the pioneer Amotekun Corps Officers in the state, held at the Gani Fawehinmi Freedom Arcade, Igbatoro Road, Akure, the state capital.
The Governor recalled that many people felt he was putting his second term ambition on the line when the Amotekun Corps was launched in Ibadan in January this year.
”And I told them, time and again, that my ambition is not worth the insecurities that our people are confronted with, where at some point, people were afraid of travelling out of the State.
“It was so horrible that marauders laid siege to the highways, as well as in the farmlands, waiting to kidnap or devour anyone in sight. With the launch of Amotekun, we resolved that it shall be no retreat, no surrender. We are not going to be intimidated or blackmailed,” Akeredolu said.
Governor Akeredolu, who expressed his readiness to champion the course of a better, safer and prosperous society and country, said he was determined not to pay lip service to the constitutional role of government, which is to seek the welfare and protection of the lives and property of the people.
He said: “It is incontrovertible that the existing security framework is being overstretched and we had to device a means of confronting the challenge of insecurity head-on. That was when the concept of Amotekun came up. As Yorubas, we are not known to surrender to our adversaries and if our forebears did not, we should not.
“On 4th March, this year, just two months after the launch of Amotekun in Ibadan, the Bill setting up the Corps was signed into law, after diligent and thorough work by the State House of Assembly. The import of this is that Amotekun Corps is now a legal entity not just the idea of an individual.
“As noted at the launch, it is not a parallel security structure to any of the security agencies. Rather, it is to complement what is on ground so that together they can achieve the goal of a safer environment, conducive enough to encourage foreign investors and rid our State of all forms of crime and criminally-minded elements.
The Governor also reassured the people that the forthcoming election in the State would be very peaceful, adding that the state will not tolerate any form of thuggery or criminality occasioned by elections.
Traditional rulers including the Olugbo of Ugbo, Oba Fedrick Obateru Akinrutan, Deji of Akure, Oba Aladetoyinbo Aladelusi, Olowo of Owo, Oba Ajibade Ogunoye and other prominent monarchs attended the event.
Heads of security agencies in the State as well as religious leaders and other stakeholders also graced the event.
*Olatunde is Special Assistant to the Governor (New Media).