Govt guarantees security, safety

By Thompson Yamput

The Kogi Government on Monday assured the people of the state of adequate security and safety during the Nov. 11 governorship election.

Mr Kingsley Fanwo, the Commissioner for Information, gave the assurance during a news conference in Lokoja.

Fanwo, who was responding to the allegation of extra-judicial killing leveled against thd government by the opposition, said the allegation was baseless and unfounded.

He said that Gov. Yahaya Bello’s administration would not submit its authority to criminals, but would resist and fight them to a stand still for the good of the citizens.

“We can’t come this far taming terrorists for the past 90 months only to lose it to the garrulous crime-sponsors defending a criminal.

“As a Government, we will do everything within the curve of law to guarantee a peaceful poll in November. It is our responsibility to give confidence to our people that they are free from attacks while exercising their franchise.

“We call on security agencies to call the actors inciting violence for thorough investigation. They must be held to account for their claims.

“Intimidation, ethnic and religious profiling and other anti-social and unconstitutional acts will be met with stiff resistance,” he warned.

Fanwo also assured that: “It is our duty to the people to create a conducive atmosphere for all to vote any party of their choice.”

He explained that the recent happening at Ejule was a necessary stitch-in-time led by security agents in the state to rid the state of criminals and criminality.

According to him, for the upteenth time, the government has reiterated its endorsement of the security operation that has brought down insecurity in that area by over 40 per cent.

He alleged that late Kabir Bala, popularly known as Okwo, was a terror in the East, kidnapping and raping young women and housewives ascwell as terrorising the entire Kogi East.

“Motorists traversing the state were subjected to ‘Okwo levy’ to the embarrassment of the state, among other acts of extreme intimidation and criminality.

“This is even when Chapter 4, Section 33 of the Constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria talks extensively about the various rights conferred on the citizens of Nigeria, one of which is the right to life, which also have limitations.

“Kabir Bala opened fire on security operatives with the intent to murder them, but according to the report by the security agencies, they engaged his gang at this point and he was neutralised in the process.

“A person who attempted to evade lawful arrest and even attempts to kill security agents can no longer hold on to such rights therefore his killing couldn’t be termed extra-judicial by any standard.

“The question you need to ask the SDP fans of the late Kabir Bala is: What is their interest in the criminal enterprise of the late crime-lord? Was there a pact between them and the late notorious leader to assassinate members of other parties?”

Fanwo said that the government was patiently waiting for the law enforcement agents to unravel the mystery by inviting those making unguarded, reckless statements without minding the approbrium of being associated with a serial killer

Reacting, the state Secretary of Social Democratic Party (SDP), Dr Arome Okeme, said that what the state government was trying to do was to give dog a bad name in order to hang it.

“What we are saying is that the government whose responsibility is to ensure the security of lives and property of its citizens, shouldn’t stand aloof to their killing no matter the offense since the law courts are there to judge,” he said.



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