As insecurity mounts, lives and properties destroyed across the Northern and Southern parts of the country by bandits and terrorist groups, state governments, including, Benue, Ekiti, Zamfara and Ondo are looking at arming their state security units with sophisticated AK47s and AK49.

 

Governor of Benue, Samuel Ortom on Thursday inaugurated the state security corps, in Makurdi, with a promise to equip them with sophisticated weapons including AK47 to match the bandits who have been recking havoc on citizens.

Also, states including Ondo, Ekiti, Osun and Zamfara that have been under constant attacks by bandits have indicated that they would arm their security agencies to prevent the continuous loss of lives and properties in their states.

 

Governor Ortom while inaugurating the state security outfit, on Thursday, revealed that 500 volunteers were trained as members of the security.

He stated that 500 trained volunteers were selected from the 23 local governments of the state.

According to Ortom, the 500 corps members were the first batch of the larger master plan of having a strong security outfit in the state that would match the ruthless bandits who have killed most of their citizens.

 

While promising to arm the corps with AK47 and AK49, Ortom yesterday donated thirty operational vehicles and 200 communication gadgets.

 

Promising that the security corps, Community Volunteer Guards will operate according to law, Ortom, said, “Given the fact that the Federal Government has consistently failed to disarm the terrorists who have continued to maim and kill our people at will, the state government is going to apply for a license to legally procure AK-47, AK-49 and other sophisticated weapons for the Benue State Volunteers Guards to enable them tackle these murderous terrorists effectively.

 

“To do this effectively, the Benue State Government had approved a two-week c apacity building programme for 500 personnel of the Community Volunteer Guards to learn some basic paramilitary aspects.”

 

Also on Thursday, representatives of Nigeria’s security chiefs, the Nigerian Governors’ Forum, the diplomatic corps and select government ministries, held a summit in Abuja with a view to ensuring that schools are secure and re-opened.

 

Recall that the Federal government ordered the shutdown of Unity Colleges across the country and all schools in the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, following the threat by bandits and security reports.

 

Governor Bello Matawalle of Zamafar State was among the first governors to have shown interest in arming the citizens with arms to defend themselves against bandits.

 

Until today, Zamafara remained the state under heavy attack from bandits who have sacked many villages and communities.

 

Governor Matawalle Chief Press Secretary Jamilu Iliyasu however said the governor would follow due process regarding the purchase of firearms for self-defense in the state.

 

The South-West states of Ondo, Ekiti, Oyo and Osun have at various times stated their readiness to arm their regional security unit, Amotekun, with sophisticated AK47 rifles but for the constitution which placed the acquiring of sophisticated weapons on the exclusive legislative list.

 

The South-West region states of Ogun, Oyo, Ondo and Ekiti have of late experienced heightened attacks on villages by bandits alleged to be Fulani herdsmen.

 

A Boko-Harm leader was arrested in Ijaye, Abeokuta, Ogun State by operatives of the State Security Service, SSS.

 

The Boko-Haram leader,  arrived in the state from Katsina and took up security work while gathering information for the terrorist group Boko-Haram.

 

The Commander of the Amotekun Corps and Special Adviser to Governor Rotimi Akeredolu on Security, Akogun Adeleye, in an interview with PUNCH stated that the not bearing of firearms by the corps was a hindrance to the operation of their men.

 

Speaking of the reason, Akogun said, “We were made to understand that such weapons belong to the exclusive list that will only be granted by the Federal Government and that is why we are asking for the creation of state police which will put to rest all these intimidations by these invaders.”

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