Kayode Fasua in Abeokuta
In a bid to complement existing security measures aimed at curbing crimes in this festive season, the military authorities in Ogun State yesterday launched ‘Operation Crocodile Smile.’
Briefing newsmen on the formation of the anti-crime unit, the General Officer Commanding (GOC), 81 Division of the Nigerian Army, Major-General Olu Irefin, said “Operation Crocodile Smile is an exercise designed by the military and other units of the armed forces to checkmate the activities of criminals in this festive period.”
Speaking at Alamala military barracks in Abeokuta while flagging off the rehabilitation of the road linking the barracks with the civilian population, Irefin said the exercise was not meant to molest anyone but to ensure that the citizenry enjoyed the yuletide without let or hindrance.
He said members of the police and the Nigerian Civil Defence Corps were co-opted, more so as the exercise was targeted at forming defence for the civilian population.
He added that the military decided to tar the road to its barracks in Abeokuta as a way of encouraging the government to muster the needed support in ensuring the completion of the dilapidated road.
Irefin commended Governor Dapo Abiodun, describing him as a listening governor, who has demonstrated willingness to put bad roads in Ogun State back to shape.
Speaking with THISDAY, spokesman for China Civil Engineering Company, which is one of the construction firms collaborating with the military on the road work, Mr. Jeje Peter said the military authorities had demonstrated that “not everything should be left for government to do.”
Commending the effort as well, the Vice Chancellor of Crescent University, Abeokuta, which is located on the stretch, Prof. Ibrahim Gbajabiamila, said: “What the Army has done is of great benefit to our university community.”
Reacting too, a building contractor in the area, Mr. Lukman Enitan, said he was happy about the road construction, in that it would ease his outfit’s expenses on maintaining damaged vehicles.
He, however, appealed to the state government to facilitate water supply to the area, as the location is currently bereft of potable water.
He also pleaded with Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company, which is in charge of the area, to up its game “as frequent outage has almost run them out of business.”