Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State has revealed that the police force has approved the establishment of a Special Operation that will be responsible for combating crime, particularly kidnapping and armed robbery in the South West Region, adding, “We are adopting a regional approach to security because we recognise we are all going to be safe and secure when the parts which make up the South West region are safe and secure”.
This was part of the decision taken at the South West Geopolitical Zone Security Summit convened by the Inspector General of Police, IGP Mohammed A. Adamu.
According to Makinde, the Special Operation will be led by a commissioner of police. The South West Governors have also made commitment towards the purchase of serviceable vehicles for the purpose of patrolling the region.
He stated that the traditional rulers in the region have pledged to work with the security agencies to take the fight against crime to the door steps of the criminals adding that members of Oodua Progressive Congress, OPC, would join in bringing crime to the lowest ebb in the Yoruba states.
Stressing that aerial surveillance of the region would be sustained, the governor noted that it has been agreed that community policing officers would be recruited within the community they reside adding that a committee comprising of OPC, police, Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria and the citizenry would be set up in each state of the federation with a mandate to reduce crime in the nation.
Speaking earlier, IGP Adamu pointed out that “the meeting is being convened within the context of our community policing vision which emphasizes citizens’ engagement in the process of identifying, dissenting and priorizing threats to communal values, partnering to develop strategies to address the threats, and building trust to undertake actions directed at mitigating them”.
Leaders and major stakeholders in the South West including Aare Onakakanfo, Iba Gani Adams, Afenifere leader, Pa Reuben Fasoranti, represented by Yinka Odumakin and others emphatically asked the federal government to approve state police.
According to Afenifere, without true federalism, which will recognize state police and other elements of the structure of true federalism, fighting crime in Nigeria will not be possible. The socio-political group wondered why the government will keep a single police when such is not kept in the western world.
“I agree totally with community policing because I believe it will metamorphose into state police”, Iba Adams said.