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OPC, Amotekun differ on operation guidelines

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THE Oodua People’s Congress, OPC, weekend, bickered with South West governors over implementation of guidelines on the formation of the regional security network, Amotekun, in the area of recruitment.

Ondo State Coordinator of OPC, Pius Ogunsanya, in a statement in Akure, submitted that the security outfit has fallen below the expectations of South-West people in curtailing crimes in the zone and advised the governors to return to the resolutions adopted at the Lagos and Ibadan summits on the establishment of the security network.

According to him, recent killings and kidnappings in the region, especially Akure, were avoidable if necessary steps were taken. He condemned the recent killing of a first-class traditional ruler, Olufon of Ifon, Oba Israel Adeusi, by yet to be known herdsmen at Elegbeka, along Owo-Benin highway.

While the OPC said the governors had abandoned the guidelines, the commander of Amotekun in Ondo State disagreed, insisting that the governors are on course.

Ogunsanya stressed that the Ipele/Ifon/Imoru axis of the expressway has come under heavy attacks of the deadly herdsmen and bandits in recent times.

 “As a way to put a final stop to such deadly attacks, kidnapping and killings along the highways across the region, South-West governors should go back to the resolutions reached at both the Ibadan and Lagos security summits “Ogunsanya said.

He further emphasised that recommendations originally approved by all stakeholders, including the Aare Onakankafo of Yoruba, Gani Adams, who headed the local militia groups such as Hunters’ Associations, Agbekoya and Vigilante Group of Nigeria (VGN), to the summits should be implemented.

 Ogunsanya noted that the current formation of Amotekun as launched by some state governors, could not effectively tackle the menace of herdsmen attacks, kidnapping, killings, and other criminal activities inside the forests and hinterlands across the region.

“The Amotekun you see parading the streets in their branded vehicles are not fashioned along with the original recommendations of the stakeholders at the security summits that brought to life the security outfit, I can authoritatively say it.”

 Meanwhile, Ondo State government has picked holes in Ogunsanya’s allegations, describing it as laughable.

 Speaking on behalf of Chairman of South-West Governors’ Forum and Governor of Ondo State, Arakunrin Rotimi Akeredolu, the Ondo State Commander of Amotekun, Chief Adetunji Adeleye, described the allegation by the OPC as unnecessary distraction.

“It is not true that we have departed from our blueprint. We are very much on course. In the area of recruitment, we have members of the OPC in the security outfit. All these talks are unnecessary distraction and laughable.”

He added, “these are irrelevant. The security outfit is out to deliver and we would not allow anything to distract us. The purpose for the establishment of the security outfit by the South-West governors would be achieved to the letters. We will continue to secure the lives and properties of our people.”

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