…Says it will strengthen it
By Marie-Therese Nanlong, Jos
Meanwhile the recent killing of about 15 youths in Kombun district of Mangu local government area of Plateau State by suspected herders has renewed the calls for a special security outfit similar to the Amotekun in the State.
Former Governor Jonah Jang had established Operation Rainbow; a form of community policing structure but it later went comatose due to lack of funding and personnel but Governor Simon Lalong is reviving the outfit to make it live to its responsibilities.
Some residents have strongly advocated effective utilization of Operation Rainbow as Bitrus Kaze said, “Governor Simon Lalong should take a cue and consolidate on the Operation Rainbow by domesticating it further in both content and context. The time is now for the government and people of Plateau state to design our own means of survival, nobody else understands our plight better.”
Another, Mashat Makut stated, “Plateau is a God-fearing State, America’s age long motto is in God we trust, but they don’t rest in that cliché when it comes to facing the enemy headlong. We need a Plateau local vigilante police now or never. If Operation Rainbow is ineffective then we do away with it completely and work with the local vigilante to set up a Plateau Police.
”The Southwest Governors only recently set up a regional local police; we have to take recourse to the scriptures to act accordingly. Desperate times call for desperate measures. If we ever doubted the collective will of the locals spearheaded by the traditional institutions then this is the time to have a deep rethink.
”If the old way isn’t working, then we have to change tactics. We alone can free ourselves from the onslaught of the attackers on a mission to claim our lands and heritage. Plateau needs a local vigilante policing structure peculiar to our terrain.”
Again Dachung Bagos stated, “I want to reiterate my strong stand and need for State and community policing to safeguard lives and property.”
However, Search for Common Ground, a non-governmental organization working in Plateau, Benue and Nasarawa States through its project: transforming the farmer-herder conflicts and promoting freedom of religions and beliefs in Nigeria’s Middle Belt recently assembled stakeholders who hinted on a need for regional synergy to combat violence and crime.
But the State Commissioner for Information and Communication, Dan Manjang noted that, “We don’t need to imitate anyone, we have Operation Rainbow which is effective but it depends on the law guiding its establishment. It has its challenges but it is just to strengthen it.
”I don’t have any knowledge of any regional or North Central security outfit like what the South West just did but we have Operation Rainbow here in the State.”