By Adekola Afolabi
The Governor of Ondo State, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu,has said the Amotekun Corps must be allowed to bear the tools and the most sophisticated weapons available to fight back against marauders committing crimes .
Governor Akeredolu explained that the incontestable authority of the state must be imposed in the country which is under threat by brazen conflict entrepreneurs and armed, audacious non-state actors.
He asserted that the State Security outfits backed by law whether in the Western Nigeria, Katsina, Borno, Benue or any Northern State must have access to the same sophisticated weapons that the marauders have.
The Governor vowed that his administration will continue to support the operational capacity of all security agencies in the State both in terms of equipment and the welfare of their personnel.
He spoke at the Passing-Out Parade of Courses 3 and 4 of the State Amotekun Corps at the Gani Fawehinmi Freedom Arcade, Igbatoro Road, Akure on Monday.
Governor emphasised that the passing out ceremony is a reminder of the need to strategize and tackle the current security situation, which he said has been left to snowball into existential crises across Nigeria.
He averred that the commitment of his administration to the safety and welfare of the people of the State and investors remains unshaken.
Governor Akeredolu charged the new officers to do nothing that will soil the image of the Corps, adding that much is expected from them.
“The key guiding principles which you must adhere to at all times include spartan discipline, zero-tolerance to bribery and abuse of power, prompt response to distress calls and display of professionalism in the discharge of your duties. No form of misconduct shall be tolerated.” He stressed.
The Governor, who noted that the current internal security framework in the country is ineffectual, submitted that the response of the subnationals by setting up their own outfits is welcome, necessary, and has become indispensable.
Governor Akeredolu said:”The Western Nigeria Security Network, AMOTEKUN CORPS, as a response, is now not just the first line of defence, but the ultimate bulwark in the protection of a way of life and of a civilization.
“The efforts of our determined and valiant Amotekun personnel since inception must be underscored, encouraged and highly commended. We must all rise at this time to acknowledge their efforts.
“On our parts, we will continue to support the operational capacity of all security agencies in the State both in terms of equipment and welfare of their personnel.
“The recent donation of 50-fitted patrol vehicles is a testament to our resolve to be up-to-date in fighting crime and criminality because without a secured environment, there can never ne visible and sustained development.
“The Amotekun Corps must be given the tools to carry out its now pivotal, indispensable duties. For centuries, we have been admonished that “a bad workman blames his tools,” in the case of Amotekun Corps the workman is expected to function without good tools.
“It is not only absurd, but also a dereliction of duty and a cause of disaffection. Dissatisfaction is induced by a feeling of unfairness. The crises in the conventional wisdom is life-threatening and nationwide. Therefore, it is unacceptable if the state sanctions differing rules of engagement for different sub-national governments.
“Those passing out today have undergone rigorous training at great expense to the state. The training will not end here it will be continuous. However, no amount of training will mask the debilitation of fighting with one arm tied against implacable foes.
“Amotekun must therefore be armed and will be armed and be backed by law. Otherwise, the training will be inadequate and we will be placing the lives of these great patriots in danger.
In their separate goodwill messages, the Osemawe of Ondo, Oba Victor Kiladejo and the chairman of Idanre local government, Prince Kayode Aroloye, saluted the courage of Governor Akeredolu which has ensured improved security of lives and property of the citizens through the establishment of Amotekun Corps.