By Onitsha Shedrack——DELTA—-
Stakeholders in Oghara, headquarters of Ethiope West local government, Delta State have blamed the Chairman of the council, Mr. Solomon Golly, for the rising cases of kidnapping in the area which has literarily crippled commercial activities in the Delta State University Teaching Hospital, DELSUTH following the consistent strike actions embarked upon on by staff of the establishment as a result of the kidnapping of their colleague.
Angered with the spate of kidnappings in the area with over 20 medics of the establishment having fallen victims in the last four months, DELSUTH staff protested to the palace of the Ovie of Oghara and Government House, Asaba where they resolved that they would not go back to their duty post until their security in the town is guaranteed.
Speaking to ADVOCATE on condition of anonymity, a former commissioner in the state while indicting the council boss of failing to carry other stakeholders in the area along in curbing the menace, noted that security is a serious business which should involve critical stakeholder, but sadly for political reasons the council boss choose to led a one-man army because he believes that he knows it all.
Accusing some youths in the town indicted in various forms security breaches of working closely with the chairman, the former commissione stated further that if the council boss is serious about cracking down on kidnappers and armed robbers in Oghara, he should come down and reach out to other leaders because he cannot do it alone, adding that the council boss must also look inward and screen some of the boys working with him.
Adding his voice to the matter, the state chairman, Vigilante Group of Nigeria, Comrade Monday Owhosiri who is also the Special Assistant on Security Matters to Governor Ifeanyi Okowa while decrying the spate of kidnappings in Oghara and its environs, bemoaned the chairman’s refusal to establish a vigilante outfit in Oghara.
He noted that rather than establishing the vigilante outfit, the council boss prefer to work with some selected youths from Oghara and environs, who according to him have no security training whatsoever.
“We sent about 25 identity cards to our people in Oghara but the chairman had refused to endorse it or even work with them, so we left him to do what he wants,” he added.
However, the council chairman, Mr. Solomon Golly in his reaction debunked the allegations describing it as the handiwork of political enemy who are bent on causing disaffection in Oghara for their own selfish reasons.
The chairman on a telephone chat with ADVOCATE, stated that those blaming him and accusing him of spending N3million as security votes, fabricated these stories to pull him down, adding that by engaging over 200 youths from the LGA to help in checkmating crime, and it has yielded positive results.
According to him, “in the last one month we have arrested over 17 kidnapping suspects with the efforts of the youths and the security agencies. I can tell you that since November the crime rate has dropped drastically because of the effort we made.
“Sometimes I forget that am the council boss and go with these boys to trace these criminals and arrest them. Unlike Jesse and Mosogar, Oghara residents are not cooperating with security agencies by providing useful information that will lead to the arrest of the criminals.
He added that those accusing him of eating N3m alone are ignorant of the workings of government; stressing that the new DPO transferred to Oghara has been staying in a hotel since his resumption as DPO in the area.
“Owing to the fact that the DPO’s residence is under renovation, he resides in a hotel and it’s the council that takes care of his lodging expenses.
“My brother do you know that it cost an average of N120, 000-N140, 000 to track a number if anyone is kidnapped if you want quick results, I also pay N10, 000 daily for the DPO’s accommodation, for security reasons I can’t give details of how I spend the security votes, but most times I spend my money to get this done, because of the lean resources of the council presently,” he stated.
On the issue of the teaching hospital, council boss stated that security have been biffed up in and around the hospital and this has ensured that security van with boys and security personnel to check any security breach, adding that the security situations is getting better adding that the people should encourage the security operatives rather than trying to pull them down.