— Declaring bandits as terrorists, a welcomed development

— Engaged bandits on more than 30 occasions on lfe/ Akure highway

— Assures Ondo people zero-tolerance to crime

Dayo Johnson, Akure

Governor of Ondo State, Rotimi Akeredolu has deployed the state security outfit codenamed Amotekun to all the Nigeria Correctional Service Centres in the state following the withdrawal of men of the Nigerian Army

Akeredolu who raised the alarm over their withdrawal lamented that it would induce jailbreaks.

He wondered why soldiers would be withdrawn from prisons, which belongs to the Federal government.

Speaking with newsmen in Akure, the state commander of Amotekun, Chief Adetunji Adeleye said that other security men from the state commands of the Nigerian Police, the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps have been deployed alongside Amotekun to man the centres for protection of the facilities.

Adeleye said that “You will agree with me that the correctional centres are Federal Government’s physical assets and it is the responsibility of the mother security agencies to provide security for the facilities.

” As soon as that incident (soldiers withdrawal) happened the police and the NSCDC immediately deployed their men to all the correctional centres and because of our knowledge of the local intelligence, men of the Amotekun were directed by the governor to join the sister security agencies to ensure that there is no vacuum.

“Based on our knowledge of local security, local intelligence, members of the Amotekun Corps, as directed by the Governor, were also detailed to go along with them and this is to ensure that there is no vacuum.

” So as we talk now, all the correctional centres are being manned by officers and men of the Nigerian police force, Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps and Amotekun Corps”, he stated

Adeleye appealed to the people of the state not to hesitate to give the security men any useful information that could assist in combating the criminal activities in the state

“First we want to give kudos to the people of the state for their support in terms of quality and timely information upon which we respond and act upon all their distress calls.

“We are also telling them that security should not be left with the security agencies alone.

“They should expose the criminals among them, we will continue to treat all information received with utmost confidence such that source of the information would never be disclosed,”

Speaking on the declaration of the bandit as a terrorist, Adeleye described it as a welcome development

He assured, that the Corps will do the needful in conjunction with other security agencies to support it towards ensuring that the terrorist groups are defeated.

On the activities of Amotekun during the yuletide, Adeleye said that “within the first 15 days of manning all major junctions and entry points leading into the state capital and all local government headquarters, we were able to arrest 50 vehicles as well as over 600 suspects.

“After thorough investigations and screenings, we brought about 45 of them to book through court rulings.

“We discovered, that criminal activities in the main towns went down completely and travellers started having problems and that was why we embarked on border patrols and you will recall that within forty-eight hours of commencement of the border patrol, we were confronted by armed robbers and kidnappers and that singular operation, we rescued about 17 victims in two separate operations which we brought to Akure and also released over 60 vehicles that were captured.

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Adeleye said the Corps has been able to keep the state safe by the adequate implementation of the Anti-Grazing law signed by the Akeredolu-led administration.

“It’s not really about how many people we have arrested. We assured the good people of Ondo state of safe yuletide festivities and to the glory of God, we were able to ensure that throughout those periods, criminal activities by hoodlums were kept at bay.

“In one or two instances we had security bridges, they were all arrested and brought to book I will give God Almighty all the thanks because it cannot be us, it’s God.

“In the same vein, I would also like to commend the Akeredolu-led administration for giving us an enabling environment and the needed supports at all times to actually secure the people of Ondo State, its environs and their property.

“The entire border patrol which was part of Phase 7 of our “Operation Clean-Up is being sustained by the government of Ondo state to ensure that the border and the state are highly protected from bandits and we appreciate the state government for such gesture”, he said.

The Security expert also hinted that the enforcement of the ban on the use of unregistered vehicles, tinted glass vehicles without permits and the abuse on the restriction of okada operations at night’s, reduced criminal activities fo 80 per cent in Ondo state.

“In every of our control points, we have members of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps and the police joining Amotekun to enforce this restriction in compliance to law and order.

“Initially, the people were apprehensive and not too happy about the development, until they realized that it was for their good.

Speaking on the borders patrol, Adeleye said that ” Since the commencement of the border patrol, we have been engaged in more than 30 occasions by criminal elements between Ife and Akure but we are determined to sustain the peace being enjoyed by our people.

“Initially, we planned to end the bother patrol activities and “Operation Clean Up phase 7 by the second of January, but based on the security situation, we decided to extend it a little after which we will now go ahead and review the security situation in the state with our sister agencies which included the police, the DSS, the NSCDC and thereafter, take the next step.

The commander added that ” to the good people of Ondo state, we want to reassure them of our commitment to zero-tolerance to crime in the state and the South West in general.

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