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Afenifere decries FG’s double standard on allowing Katsina security outfit to carry weapons

By Rotimi Agboluaje, Ibadan
25 September 2022   |   3:56 am
The pan-Yoruba socio-political organisation, Afenifere, has expressed dismay over the double standard being displayed by the Federal Government in its dealings with states...

The pan-Yoruba socio-political organisation, Afenifere, has expressed dismay over the double standard being displayed by the Federal Government in its dealings with states in the Southern and Northern parts of the country.

A statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Jare Ajayi, said although there were many instances to be cited, “we want to restrict ourselves to the most recent one for now, because of the serious implications it holds for our security, political and socio-economic well-being”.

Ajayi said the recent disclosure that Katsina State Government was granted the permission to equip its security outfit with sophisticated arms, including Ak47, while denying same for other states was unacceptable.

He said: “News had it that earlier this month, Katsina State Government announced its plan to recruit 3,000 individuals into its Special Vigilante Corps to combat terrorism in the state. No fewer than 600 have been trained in the usage of sophisticated weapons including Ak47.”

It would be recalled that governors in the South West, about two years ago, established States Security Network, which they codenamed Amotekun. It was to combat the festering insecurity in the region. Amotekun, was, however, hamstrung by the Federal Government in two major areas that were critical.

“Amotekun was denied the licence to be equipped with sophisticated weapons to confront the terrorists and bandits.
“Amotekun was robbed of the power to prosecute suspects; notwithstanding the evidences they marshalled. They must hand the culprits over to the police. Complaints are rife that many cases handed over to the Police by Amotekun ended up without proper prosecution, if at all.

“Rumours had it that some culprits ended up being released by the police, a reason being given for the rise in people taking laws into their own hands.”

He cited Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom’s case, who has unsuccessfully sought licence from the Federal Government to equip the state’s vigilance group with weapons.

“ Also, Ondo State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, recently spoke angrily on the preferential treatment given to Katsina State government. His angst is highly justified.

Meanwhile, the attempt by the Katsina State Police Command to debunk Akeredolu’s claim failed, as the command, through its spokesman, Gambo Isah, said the Katsina State Vigilante Corps was not given AK 47.

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