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Outsmart criminals, Ambode challenges security agencies ahead of yuletide


12th Annual Town Hall Meeting on Security

The Lagos State governor, Akinwunmi Ambode, yesterday urged security agencies to take practical steps to be ahead of criminal elements and build on the successes recorded so far in making the state safe.

Speaking at the 12th Town Hall Meeting on Security organised by the Lagos State Security Trust Fund (LSSTF), Ambode said though the security agencies deserved commendations for their efforts in securing the state, more strategies and policies had to be adopted to outsmart hoodlums, especially during the yuletide season and the electioneering period now that the country was approaching the general elections in 2019.

“As long as we want to go out in the night to enjoy Christmas and have night out, these other good guys (men of the underworld) are thinking about us and so we have to be two steps ahead of them all the time in terms of strategy and reforms we need to make. So, we need to think about how to outsmart them and believe me this is their season. We need to smart up and be vigilant,” Ambode said.

Responding to issues raised by participants at the meeting, especially on the increase in number of beggars on the road with attendant security risk, the governor said government was already perfecting plans to set up a Special Task Force consisting of plain cloth personnel to prevent security breach.

“Lagos is a victim of its own success. Many people are coming to Lagos in droves and this is November/December meaning that more people are coming into Lagos but we are having the same capacity that was used to manage 12 million people and now using same to manage 23 million people. Do we stop being successful, the answer is no but we need to now stretch ourselves to be able to manage our success and also create more facilities to be able to do that.”

Executive Secretary/CEO of LSSTF, Dr. Abdurrazaq Balogun, the fund despite the obvious challenges would continue to give critical material and infrastructural support to the Lagos State police command.

“With a population of over 21 million people and probably an estimated 30,000 police officers on active duty, which is a ratio of 700:1, we are far above the world accepted ratio of 450:1. It is evident we do not have enough men to do the job and so we must turn to technology, which cost money.”

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