By Simon Ebegbulem
BENINâ€”MEMBERS of Edo State House of Assembly and the state Police Command, yesterday, engaged themselves in a war of words over the resolution passed by the House urging the command to be alive to its responsibility by ensuring the safety of citizens of the state.
The Majority Leader of the House, Mr Philip Shuaibu, specifically accused the authorities of the command of selective justice due to their alleged failure to prosecute a Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, lawmaker, Mr Frank Okiye, who was arrested with a gun penultimate week. He also lamented that the Police had not taken any action in respect of the lawmakers that used dangerous weapons against their colleagues during the fracas in the House, warning that such issues, if not properly treated, would send wrong signals to the public.
But reacting through its Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Peter Ogboi, the command described the allegation of poor performance against it as untrue, just as he described the allegation that the Police was protecting the lawmaker who was accused of gun running as â€œpolitical statement.â€
However, in a consequential motion moved by Mr Folly Ogedengbe, the House noted that the Police had been helpless in the series of crimes being perpetrated in the state and that the Police had failed to prosecute even the perpetrators of the crime.
Shuaibu, who commented after the resolution was passed, told Vanguard that â€œA lawmaker was caught with a pump action gun and he said the gun was licensed. A pump action gun is never licensed. It is double barrels that are licensed”
Meanwhile, the factional crisis in the state PDP, yesterday, aborted the meeting called by the state Police Commissioner, Mr Emmanuel Udoji.
The commissioner called the meeting to admonish the political leaders in all the parties to always toe the path of peace and stop creating tension in the state.
But Vanguard observed that only the leaders from Dr Samuel Ogbemudia- led PDP attended the meeting, while those loyal to Chief Tony Anenih boycotted the meeting.
Vanguard gathered that the meeting was aborted after the commissioner of police received a call from Abuja not to proceed with the meeting apparently because the state chairman of the party, Chief Dan Orbih, and other leaders loyal to Chief Anenih were not present. The acting chairman of Ogbemudia’s group, Elder Sunny Uyugue, was present at the meeting.