By Rotimi Ojomoyela
GOVERNOR Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State, yesterday, restated that it is the responsibility of government to protect its citizens, saying the inability to achieve that would mean it has failed in its duties.
Fayemi said this when he received the executive members of Federation of Ekiti State Students’ Union, FESSU, the National Female Students’ Association of Nigeria, as well as students’ union leaders of higher institutions in the state.
He said: “Clearly, government has a lot to do to protect its citizens. The first responsibility we have in the Constitution of Nigeria is the security and welfare of citizens. And if we are not able to achieve all of that, then, we would be said to be failing in our duties and, since we don’t want to be seen as failures, I want to reassure you that as governors, we are working collaboratively with the Federal Government and our security institutions to stem the tide of insecurity.
“It is a time all of us are concerned about the issue of insecurity and I must thank you for going beyond your immediate issue as students to raise the question that is agitating the minds of all Nigerians, security, particularly security of our girl child. I have had cause over the last month or two to visit Kankara, Jangebe in Zamfara and go to Kebbi where our female students have been abducted and meet with the governors, look at how we can also assist security institutions to retrieve these abducted children. Not to mention what has been happening particularly in Kaduna state over the last few months.
“Government has a lot to do to protect our citizens, the first responsibility we have in the constitution of Nigeria is the security and welfare of citizens. And if we are not able to achieve all of that, then, we would be said to be failing in our duty and since we don’t want to be seen as failures, I want to reassure you that as governors, we are working collaboratively with the federal government and our security institutions to stem the tide of insecurity.
“At the Nigeria Governors’ Forum, we declared an emergency against gender-based violence from June 10, 2020, I directed all states to enact laws against gender-based violence and there is a whole range of it, sexual harassment, defilement of children and domestic violence. And at the time we declared that emergency, we had 14 states that had signed into law, the violence against persons prohibition act, today, we have 30 states, many in the northern part of Nigeria that had not signed it last year and has now signed it.”
Earlier, the National President of FESSU, Comrade Awolola Charles and the President of Female Students Association of Nigeria, Comrade Modupe Adetiba, commended Governor Fayemi in his effort at ensuring students are well-positioned to achieve their hearts’ desires for greatness.