Amotekun: Governor Fayemi gives details why it was created
As ‘Amotekun’, southwest’s regional security force commenced operation on shaky note on Thursday, January 9, Governor Kayode Fayemi has explained the rationale behind its establishment.
Fayemi, who governs Ekiti and chairs a forum of Nigerian governors, said Amotekun, which is also called the Western Nigeria Security Network (WNSN), is not a form of the regional police. The governor spoke at the launch of the security body in Ibadan, Oyo state, explaining that the governors were under pressure to secure the lives and property of the people of the region.
Some governors and south-west officials at the launch of Amotekun Source: UGC According to Fayemi, the fears of the people of the southwest needed to be allayed especially with the way incidents of insecurity occurred in the area in recent times. The governor said he and his colleagues were further put under pressure following the killing of Funke Olakunrin, daughter of Pa Reuben Fasoranti, leader of the Afenifere, in 2019. Fayemi, while promising that the governors would ensure adequate security in the region, further explained that, against insinuation, none of the governors in the south-west was losing interest in the programme. He explained that some of the governors had earlier advocated for state police, but added that the Amotekun is not meant to undermine the federal government.
Fayemi said they have no intention of undermining the integrity of the government. To him, Amotekun is simply a community policing structure which is targeted to respond to a challenge.
“It is nothing but a confidence-building strategy for our people in the six states in the western zone,” Fayemi said.
“Amotekun is not a replacement nor an imitation of the Nigerian Police Force. It is a compliment that gives our people confidence that they are being looked after by those they have elected into office,” he said adding that its establishment should not create fear among the people of the country.
He added that he and his colleagues would continue to advocate for state police.
“We do not want anyone to misconstrue what is happening here. The conception of Amotekun is that we would operate on a state by state basis,” he said.
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The Ooni of Ife, Enitan Ogunwusi, on Thursday declared that Southwest traditional rulers are in support of the new regional security outfit, code-named ‘Amotekun.’
The monarch’s comment comes just as the Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State also on Thursday said the Western Nigeria Security Network (WNSN) otherwise know as ‘Amotekun’ would not ”undermine the power of the Federal Government of Nigeria.”
Mr Ogunwusi made his declaration during the launching of Amotekun by the governors of the South-west region.
At the launching held in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, were Governors Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State, Seyi Makinde of Oyo State and Mr Fayemi.
Others are Deputy Governor of Ogun, Noimat Salako-Oyedele; Deputy Governor of Osun, Benedict Alabi; Yoruba World Congress Leader, Banji Akintoye and Deji Osinbogun.
It will be recalled that the six governors from the zone: Rotimi Akeredolu (Ondo) Seyi Makinde (Oyo), Gboyega Oyetola (Osun), Babajide Sanwo-Olu (Lagos) and Mr Fayemi (Ekiti), had last year agreed to establish Amotekun, aimed at strengthening security in the region.
The region, like others, has been ravaged by crimes such as banditry, robbery and kidnapping in recent months leading to the deaths of many.
Mr Ogunwusi warned personnel who will be working with the new security outfit ”not to betray the interest of Yoruba land.”
He declared that all traditional rulers in the region ”were in support of the new security outfit.”