Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State has declared his support for his Zamfara State counterpart, Governor Bello Matawalle on his approach to tackle insecurity in his state by self defence.
Akeredolu, in a statement signed his Senior Special Assistant (Special Duties & Strategy), Dr. Doyin Odebowale, commended Matawalle for his boldness to face insecurity headlong in his state.
According to the statement, “The governor of Ondo State, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, commends the boldness of his brother Governor, Bello Matawalle, in his bid to confront the security challenges in his State, adopting a pragmatic approach.
“The Government and the people of Zamfara State have been pushed to the wall. The feeling of despondency is pervasive in the land. We must, however, advise caution. The directive of the State Governor to the Commissioner of Police to issue licenses to qualified citizens to bear arms in the defense of their immediate environments and the State in general is commendable.
“But the NSA and Inspector General of Police may have to issue license to possess a certain category of arms. No such licenses have been issued to individuals since 2007 while those which existed had been revoked. Therefore, this directive, attractive and compelling in the current circumstances, may be stifled by existing federal arrangement.
“The Governor notes, with great concern, the continued refusal by the Federal Government to grant licenses to security outfits, run by some States, to bear sophisticated firearms capable of restraining, effectively, acts of criminality and brazen impunity with commensurate responses.
“The deliberate policy of the Federal Government to deny exigent regional security outfits of the rights to bear firearms, when it is evident that the security agencies in the country are overwhelmed and distracted by centrifugal forces, is a major factor, among many, exacerbating the current security challenges in the country.
“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”.
Uche Nwosu is a two time Shell Petroleum PLC award winner in the year 2000;
He won the Shell Award on Investigative Journalism and Environmental Cleanliness.