THE SECURITY INITIATIVES OF ARAKUNRIN OLUWAROTIMI ODUNAYO AKEREDOLU IN ONDO STATE —HON KOLAWOLE BABATUNDE
In recent times, criminal herdsmen have been on rampage, raping, destroying, maiming and killing people in many states of the Federation including Ondo State.
The insecurity problem has become so pervasive that no segment of the Nigerian society is spared. To make matter worse, the Nigerian Police seems to have been overwhelmed by the increasing cases of criminalities perpetrated by these bandits.
Pix: Hon Kolawole Babatunde.
The criminal herdsmen have illegally occupied the thick forests of five (5) South Western States of Ondo, Ekiti, Oyo, Ogun and Osun where they take their victims to for the payment of ransoms and possible execution. The situation has become so precarious that peasants could no longer do their farm work and our highways are no longer safe for commuters.
Thus, the six South West Governors led by Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Odunayo Akeredolu of Ondo State held an emergency meeting on the deplorable security situation in the region and resolved it was necessary to have a regional security outfit that would be under their exclusive control to arrest the ugly trend.
On January 9, 2020, the Governors launched a security outfit, code-named “Operation Amotekun” in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital to defend the region against rising insecurity marked by indiscriminate killings, kidnappings, banditry and destruction of farmlands by Fulani herdsmen.
The Amotekun Corps is a child of necessity born out of the need to explore other means of securing communities that have been greatly endangered.
Expectedly, the initiative after its launch triggered serious controversies across the country as the Federal government through the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister for Justice, Abubakar Malami, described the initiative as illegal.
It took the doggedness, unyielding resolve, exceptional leadership and ingenuity of Arakunrin Akeredolu to ensure the regional security initiative come to stay. He had dared whoever that is not comfortable with the initiative to approach the courts.
The Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Odunayo Akeredolu inaugurated the Ondo State Security Network Agency, i.e., the Amotekun Corps at Gani Fawehinmi Arcade in Akure, the state capital in August 2020 to curtail the menace of criminal herdsmen in the state. The Governor has left no stone unturned to have a more secured Ondo State.
It is important here to commend the efforts of Chief Adetunji Adeleye, the Ondo State Commander of Amotekun Corps, and his team for their exploits in the last six months in combating crimes in the state.
Under his able leadership, many bandits and other criminal elements have been napped while a number of kidnapped victims have been rescued from their abductors.
Amongst the numerous breakthroughs recorded by the Chief Adeleye-led Amotekun Corps is the arrest of the suspected killers of Oba Israel Adeusi, the Olufon of Ifon, in Elegbeka Forest some days after the gruesome murder of the First Class Monarch in November 2020.
And just penultimate Sunday, the Amotekun Corps burst the illegal operations of some gold miners in the state’s Forest Reserves in Owo area while on a mission to flush out criminals from the Forests. No few than fourteen (14) persons who were involved in the illicit act were apprehended by the operatives of the Corps.
Over 50 criminals are being prosecuted directly by Amotekun the first in the Region to secure this giant stride.
In a turbulent period like this, we need a resilient leader with a positive attitude and who has a sense duty to proffer solutions and stand by his people. Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Odunayo Akeredolu is demonstrating absolute leadership not only in Ondo State and South West but across the nation right now.
He had on many occasions gone against major authorities in order to protect the interest of his citizens not minding what they could cost him personally.
Arakunrin Akeredolu is ever blunt, precise, uncompromising and resolute. We could not have prayed for less. The entire nation must rally round him like never before.
Hon Kolawole Babatunde (Amaechi),
Former Member, House of Reps (Akoko Southwest/Southeast) & former Special Adviser on Community Dev to Gov Akeredolu