The rising insecurity across the South-West region has prompted the Aare Onakakanfo of Yorubaland, Gani Adams, to counsel South-West governors on empowering the Amotekun Corps, so they can tackle the menace.
Speaking on Tuesday at the annual Oodua Festival, held at the Palace Square, Ile-Ife, in Osun State, Adams implored at the event, the Osun governor, Ademola Adeleke and his Ogun counterpart, Dapo Abiodun.
On rising cases of kidnapping in the region, Adams said: “They (governors) should empower the local organisations and the Amotekun Corps, to complement the effort of the police and other security agencies.
“Security is not about the government alone. All hands must be on deck to make sure we have adequate security, so definitely the government should coordinate local organizations, Amotekun, and Nigeria police to achieve a very good result.
“The governors have their way of solving their problem. Oyo state boosted the Amotekun, mobilized up to 3000 operatives and equipped them. They have been doing well.
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“In Oyo and Ondo states, Amotekun is doing well but in Ekiti, Osun, and Ogun states, the Amotekun is not adequately empowered like in Oyo and Ondo states. Lagos state is not doing it at all. We have to use what we have to achieve what we want.”
Despite the establishment of Amotekun, which was launched in January 2020, kidnappings and killings have remained rampant in the region.
Governors Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo, Seyi Makinde of Oyo, Dapo Abiodun of Ogun, Babajide Sanwo-olu of Lagos, former Governor of Osun Gboyega Oyetola and former Ekiti Governor Kayode Fayemi announced the establishment of the new security outfits after their respective state Houses of Assembly passed the bill for their establishment into law.
According to the governors, Amotekun, a name derived from the Yoruba word for the cheetah, will support the Nigerian police, a federal agency, in fighting crime in their six states and curb clashes between farmers and roaming cattle herders.
The outfit was especially expected to check kidnappings associated with rogue elements among the cattle herders in the region.