By Tola Gbadamosi
The Ondo State Security Network Agency codenamed Amotekun Corps, has confirmed the killing of 20 okada riders by unknown robbers in the state.
Commander of the Corps in the state, Akogun Adetunji Adeleye, disclosed this during the flag-off of the 2023/2024 Ember Months and all Joint Border patrol, to ensure a crime-free yuletide.
At the flag-off of the campaign at Ondo-Osun border town, Owena, in collaboration with other security agencies, Adeleye said such exercise was successful last year when about 100 kidnapped victims were rescued and many criminals arrested.
Adeleye who is also the Special Adviser to Ondo State Governor on Security Matters, cautioned motorcyclists against operating between 6pm and 6am, insisting that the government’s ban on okada operators during the period is still in force.
He said over 20 okada riders across the state had lost their lives to armed robbers who snatched their motorcycles during the night operations in the last three weeks.
The Corps Commander also warned that vehicles without registered number plates would be impounded during the ember months security campaign, advising car dealers against using stickers.
Adeleye said, “There is no way you perpetrate crimes in Ondo State and get away with it. We are stationed in all exit points. We have our communication equipments in place to communicate. Our patrol vehicles would be on 24 hours basis throughout this period.
“This 2023 ember patrol, we are ready to do much more that we were able to do last year. We want to specially thank the public for their support, while asking for a bigger support this year, so that we can ensure a safe environment.
“The directive of 6am to 6pm for use of Okada and ban from 6pm to overnight remains in force as put in place by the government. Vehicles and motorcycles that are not on essential duties are not to ply the streets, except they’re on essential duties.
“It is no longer permitted for vehicles to ply the road without registered plate numbers, and all vehicles with tinted glass should obtain police permit for the tinted number.
“We want investors to come and do their work. We want farmers to go to their farms unmolested. Headers and farmers issues have been resolved substantial and we don’t want it to resurface. Headers have right to their business. Farmers too don’t have to take laws into their hands, but report headers who destroy their farms.
“We want to assure the good people of Ondo State of their safety. The synergy among the army, the police, DSS, the local vigilante, is one of those things that are responsible for the relative security situation which we are determined to maintain in the state.
“We have an enhanced communication network where we can talk to different people at the same time. Therefore, we have our distress phone number, 08079999989, in case you want to tell us your identity, tell us, and if you want to keep anonymous,” Amotekun Commander said.