The Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu has given his backing to the South West security outfit codenamed: operation ‘Amotekun’, saying however, it should be state based.
The IG disclosed this shortly after meeting with South West Governors at a Stakeholders Summit on Community Policing that took place at Lagos House, Alausa, Ikeja.
Those in attendance include Governors of Lagos, and Ondo states, Babajide Sanwo-Olu and Akeredolu, Oyo, Ogun, Osun and Ekiti states were represented by their deputies Engr, Rauf Olaniyan, Engr. (Mrs) Noimot Oyedele, Mr. Benedict Alabi and Mrs. Bisi Egbeyemi.
All the Commissioners of Police from the six South West states, other security outfits in Lagos state, Commissioners for Justice and Attorneys-General from the South West states, Royal fathers, Community Development Committee representatives and others.
Addressing the press after the meeting, Adamu said the Federal Government is not in opposition to any security outfit that would be in tandem with community policing.
He, however, added that the issue of regional policing should be discarded.
“The meeting is to fine-tune on Amotekun. What we have concluded is what the Chairman of South West Governors’ Forum has just told you.
“Amotekun is not a regional security outfit. As it is every state has been having its security outfit. It is agreed that the structure be in conformity with community policing. It should be infused into it.
“The public is the police and the police is the public. It (Amotekun) must be backed by law for it to be effective. The structure will be in tandem with community policing,” the police boss said.
Earlier Governor of Ondo State and Chairman, South West Governors Forum, Arakunrin Rotimi Akerodolu said the Governors had resolved to enforce community policing in its entirety.
He added that despite having Amotekun as a security outfit, it should not be seen as a regional policing.
“Let me start by saying we Yoruba have an adage that says when brothers come out smiling after a meeting, that means they have not been honest with themselves.
“Today, I defeated that adage; we are coming out smiling because we had very fruitful discussion. It is clear now that community policing is on coming, it is one that will benefit all of us from our units, wards and councils. We will ensure community policing in its entirety.
“We want all of us to know that we said, we are having Amotekun, it is not regional police, it is state based. We have agreed that we can use Amotekun in our states,” Akeredolu disclosed.
In his opening address before the commencement of the meeting, Akeredolu had hinted that governors of the South West would ensure that they give what it takes for the security of lives and property in the region.
He said it is time to face the truth which is community policing because of the peculiarity of every state, adding that this is what is done in advanced countries and it is time to embrace it because of numerous security challenges which has overstretched the conventional police.
“This is something of great importance to all of us, something we can not pretend about, we must be honest with ourselves, all of us agree that we are facing security challenges, the National Assembly, the President, nobody is happy with the way things are going, we must have a rethink about central police, there is too much on the IG’s table”, Aketedolu said.
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