Victor Ogunje in Ado Ekiti
The Ekiti State Governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, has solicited the support of the traditional rulers and chiefs in order to tackle kidnapping and other violent crimes in the state.
The state Deputy Governor, Otunba Bisi Egbeyemi, made the call yesterday on behalf of the governor while having audience with the members of the Association of Ekiti
Traditional Chieftaincy Title Holders in his office in Ado-Ekiti.
Egbeyemi, in a statement signed by his Special Assistant (Media),
Odunayo Ogunmola, said the state government was taking some steps to ensure security of lives and property in the state.
The traditional chiefs, who were led by their spokesman, the Odofinyin of Iyin-Ekiti, High Chief Ayodeji Esan, had listed a ten-point demand which included official recognition by government and their involvement in the maintenance of peace and security in each community.
They also advised the government to involve local hunters and vigilance groups as part of measures to ward off armed herdsmen and kidnappers.
The deputy governor disclosed that a special security council meeting had been scheduled for today where far reaching decisions would be taken on the security situation of the state.
Egbeyemi, who added that the Fayemi administration was collaborating with Obas and chiefs to tighten security, stressed that the state government would not tolerate a situation in which their domains serve as operational bases for kidnappers and other criminals.
According to him, “We would not take it lightly with any Oba or chief in whose domains people are kidnapped, we would also condemn any palace where people are kidnapped or used by kidnappers to operate.
“Henceforth, Obas and chiefs must now be on the alert as well as must know the people in your vicinity. Be on the alert especially strange persons in your neighbourhood and farms who may want to use those places as hideouts.
“Those coming in and going out of your domains must be known. Government is ready to assist you to ensure that there is security of lives and property.
“The traditional leaders in communities between Igede and Efon, Ikere and
Emure, Ado and Ikere; Iworoko and Ifaki as well as Ifaki and Omuo should be up and doing.”
“You will recall that during the first tenure of Fayemi, he committed a lot of resources to security by equipping the police and purchasing over 35 vehicles for them.
“But after four years, the vehicles were damaged and there were no replacements for them.”
The traditional rulers, however, pledged their loyalty to the Fayemi administration which they acknowledged has invested in the development of grassroots.