OPC blasts Northern group over comment on Amotekun
• Those Against Outfit Are Sponsors Of Terror, Says Ohanaeze Youths
The Lagos State coordinator of the Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC), Alhaji Mutairu Adesina, has flayed the Northern Youths Council of Nigeria (NYCN) for condemning the new security initiative, Amotekun, inaugurated by the six Southwest governors on Thursday. The OPC coordinator described NYCN disposition to Amotekun as inciting and capable of causing unnecessary tension in the country. Similarly, Ohanaeze Ndigbo Youth Council (OYC), yesterday, berated NYCN for kicking against Amotekun, saying those against it are sponsors of terror.
It would be recalled that few hours after its inauguration to stem crime in the zone, National President of NYCN, Alhaji Isah Abubakar, kicked against of the security initiative, describing it as a military wing of the OPC. But in a response, OPC said: “It is sad that such inciting comments could come from a leader of a group in the north. However, I need to react to this uncomplimentary statement that is capable of causing unnecessary tension in the country. It shows that NYCN is one of the sponsors of the suspected herdsmen that killed our people and destroyed our farms.
“Where was Abubakar when gunmen and suspected herdsmen invaded our farms and communities, kidnapped and killed our people in the Southwest?“Since OPC’s inception in 1994, it has never been found wanting. None of our members have been caught or arrested for kidnapping, destroying or killing other people. OPC has always been complementing the efforts of the Nigerian Police on safety and security issues. We are not criminals, marauders or killers.”
Explaining the rationale behind the move, Adesina said though the inauguration of Amotekun was long overdue, it was a timely response to the myriads of security challenges threatening the peace and tranquility of the region.He pointed out there is Hisbah in Kano and Civilian Joint Task Force (JTF) that complements the efforts of the Police and military in Borno, eight states in the Middle Belt formed the G8. So, why is NYCN raising issues where there is none?
“In the last four years, we have a record of over 200 people across the Southwest that have been killed by these criminal herdsmen. Over 400 people have also been kidnapped and released after paying ransom. So, why is this unnecessary brouhaha over operation Amotekun?
“This group should be warned, because from what transpired between yesterday and today, there are indications that some elements are feeling uncomfortable with whatever progress we are making in the Southwest, and that is too dangerous for our polity.”OYC, in a statement in Abakaliki by its National President, Mazi Okechukwu Isiguzoro, said comments against the outfit was a confirmation that the current security challenges in some parts of south are creation of enemies of Nigeria.He recommend a new regional security outfit, with operation code, Ogbunigwe, for the Southeast and called for the creation of Ministry of Homeland Security across the zone to coordinate the proposed outfit.
The statement added: “We are fully aware of the fact that most beneficiaries of the insecurity challenges are sponsoring new groups to avert lasting solutions for the security threats in the southern part of Nigeria.“The essence of the regional security outfits are the limitations facing the state-owned security outfits, who are restricted to boundaries of their various states, We had observed criminals are taking the disadvantages and loopholes of lack of uniformed regional security outfit in the Southeast to perpetuate heinous crimes against Igbos.”It urged people of the zone to support the initiative to curb insecurity and activities of criminal elements in the area.