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Akeredolu backs Zamfara govt over calls for self-defence, reiterates clamour for state police

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Rotimi Akeredolu Aketi

Rotimi Akeredolu, the Ondo State Governor has backed calls by the Zamfara State Government regarding the rights to bear arms by residents in the fight against terrorism.

Akeredolu made this call on Monday in a statement issued by his senior special assistant on special duties and strategy, Dr Doyin Odebowale.

According to him, the mandate by Zamfara Governor Bello Matawalle confirmed the pervasive loss of confidence in the handling of insecurity in the country.

Ibrahim Dosara, the commissioner for information in Zamfara, had revealed in a statement on Sunday that the administration had ordered residents to get ready and prepare their weapons in order to protect themselves against bandits who have been terrorizing the state.

According to Dosara, the government had directed the state Commissioner of Police to issue licenses to all those who qualify and are willing to obtain guns to defend themselves.

Supporting the mandate, Akeredolu said, “It signals a situation of near-capitulation on the part of the security agencies centrally controlled by the federal government. It portends great danger for the polity.

“It is a sad commentary on the increasing inability and impotence of the Zamfara State Government, and other states, to protect their citizens in the wake of relentless and mindless assaults by terrorists and bandits. It suggests a total lack of trust between the state government and federal government on one hand, and the helpless and hopeless situation in which the people have found themselves concerning the security of lives, on the other.

Read also: Akeredolu orders installation of CCTV in institutions, others in Ondo

“The stark reality confronting the people of Zamfara leaves the government with no esoteric option than to lean heavily on the current arrangement. The government and the people of Zamfara State have been pushed to the wall. The feeling of despondency is pervasive in the land.”

Akeredolu also stated that one major factor, among many others, contributing to the country’s current security challenges is the federal government’s deliberate policy of denying the right to bear arms to urgent regional security outfits when it is obvious that the country’s security agencies are overburdened and diverted by centrifugal forces.

“A federal system of government cannot be administered as if the country is a unitary colony, controlled, rigidly, at the centre, while the constituent units are treated as mere outposts.

“This fact, coupled with the logic of divergence and rapid growth in population, imposes no other practicable measure on the managers of this country, including our legislators, than to accept the inevitability of the establishment of a state police,” the Ondo State Governor opined.

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