The Ekiti State Government on Tuesday expressed its readiness to collaborate with security agencies to comb forests and other dark spots in a renewed bid to tackle kidnapping and other criminal activities in the state.
The Deputy Governor, Otunba Bisi Egbeyemi, disclosed this on Tuesday when he received traditional rulers from Oye Local Government on behalf of Governor Kayode Fayemi who sought the government’s support for improved security in their domains.
According to a statement by the Special Assistant (Media) to the Deputy Governor, Odunayo Ogunmola, the monarchs who were led by the Chairman of Oye Local Government Traditional Council and the Onitaji of Itaji Ekiti, Oba Idowu Babalola also called for security beef-up in their palaces.
The Obas’ meeting with the Deputy Governor which was also attended by the Chairman of Oye Local Government, Mr Foluso Ojo, came barely a few hours after their colleague, the Obadu of Ilemeso Ekiti, Oba David Oyewumi was released from the custody of suspected kidnappers.
Egbeyemi stressed that the administration of Governor Kayode Fayemi has always made the security of lives and property a priority.
While sympathizing with the royal fathers on the kidnap of Oba Oyewumi, the Deputy Governor emphasized that the government, security agencies and residents, most especially, have much to do on intelligence gathering and timely report of movement of strange people in their localities to appropriate security agencies and government organs.
Responding to the existence of forest reserves and caves allegedly used by criminal elements to perpetrate their nefarious activities, Egbeyemi said there is an urgent need to raid such hideouts.
He said: “We are going to work on whatever you have enunciated here today. We all know that security is a problem all over the country; it is not peculiar to Ekiti State alone. “There should be intelligence gathering because we never heard that there is a cave-in in that place but now that you have told us, we will work on it.
“We need to raid the forests, we need to comb the forests and we need to take over the caves if there is any cave where criminals are hiding. What we have just heard from you is an intelligence report and we are going to work on it.”
The Deputy Governor assured the Obas that the State Government will establish contacts with the Federal Government on the urgent need to assist its security agencies in the state with more patrol vehicles and other logistics to perform optimally in the fight against crime.
The Oye Traditional Council Chairman, Oba Babalola thanked God that the Obadu of Ilemeso was rescued alive after spending some days with the kidnappers under what he describes as harrowing conditions. The monarch appealed to the state government to tighten security in their palaces and domains to prevent a reoccurrence of such an incident.
He said: “We want the government to help us in the area of security. We need security in our palaces and in our towns. There is an urgent need to tighten security in our domains to give assurance to our people who are now agitated.”
The Onisan of Isan Ekiti, Oba Ayodele Adejuwon, said there is a need for deployment of more security personnel to carry out a sustained and coordinated show of force in communities in the council area. Oba Adejuwon drew the government’s attention to challenges confronting the Police and Civil Defense formations in the area especially the unavailability of operational vehicles has made the Obas engage the services of local hunters.
The Oloye of Oye Ekiti, Oba Oluwole Ademolaju, and the Alafon of Ilafon Ekiti, Oba Akin Owoeye asked the government to identify the black spots of suspected kidnappers in the council area and take appropriate actions immediately to curb the growing criminality in the area.
The monarchs who commended Governor Kayode Fayemi administration for providing social amenities and for the various ongoing developmental projects across the state pledged their continued support for his administration in his relentless efforts to make the state a secured and more conducive place to live and do business.
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