The issue of Amotekun, the local security outfit recently set up by South-West governors, has landed at the National Assembly.
This followed the directive by the Speaker of the House of Representative, Femi Gbajabiamila, that the Leader of the House, Hassan Ado Dogwa should bring a bill that would amend the 1999 Constitution to recognize the security outfit and any other similar to it in the country.
The Speaker gave the directive in his welcome address on Wednesday. According to him, the setting up of Amotekun and similar security outfits were as a result of the clear gaps in the security architecture in the country.
He said, “Recently, the Governors of Lagos, Ogun, Osun, Ekiti, Oyo and Ondo states took action to implement a regional security network to support the efforts of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) in preventing crime and protecting the lives and property of those our citizens who live, work and travel through these states. The establishment of Amotekun, as the network is called, has met with commentary from across the country, both for and against. Too often, it has seemed to me that lost in these interactions is the hard, brutal and unavoidable fact that Amotekun and other such state or zonal interventions that already quietly exist in other parts of the country are a desperate response to the vile manifestations of insecurity that trouble the lives of citizens, depriving them of the peace and security that gives life meaning.
“I do not know that Amotekun or whatever iterations of it may follow represents the ultimate or perfect solution to the problem of insecurity in our country. Nobody does that. What I do know with absolute clarity and certainty is that the localised manifestations of insecurity across the different parts of our country call for unique and localised approaches that take those peculiarities into account. What I also know, is that whichever approach we seek, we are obligated to work within the limits imposed by the constitution to which we all swear allegiance. Above all else, I am certain in the knowledge that doing nothing is not an option. We have a responsibility as legislators to support the best efforts of those who act with noble intent to protect our citizens.
“I, therefore, call on the Leader of the House of Representatives and the Minority Leader to take active steps to bring to the floor, appropriate amendments to the constitution that will ensure that these and other righteous interventions to protect the lives and property of our citizens are firmly in compliance with the laws of the land.”
At the Wednesday plenary, Speaker Gbajabiamila also regretted the death of Lawan Adimi, the chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) in Adamawa State and Ropvil Dalep Daciya, a student from Plateau State.
The two persons were brutally murdered by Boko Haram terrorists recently.
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