By Kemi Olaitan
A group of concerned citizens within the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Oyo State, the Pacesetters Initiative (TPI), yesterday raised an alarm over the worsening state of insecurity in the state, alleging that security has collapsed under the leadership of Governor Seyi Makinde.
This is just as it said the failure started since the governor took over the baton of governance from late Senator Abiola Ajimobi in May 2019.
But in a swift reaction, the state chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) challenged the APC to direct all its questions on the spate of insecurity in the country at President Muhammadu Buhari, not Makinde, noting that the governor has been most supportive of security agencies since his administration came on board.
The PDP through its state Publicly Secretary, Mr Akeem Olatunji, in a statement made available to THISDAY, described as irresponsible, reprehensible and untoward, the statement by the APC group which tried to put the blame of spate of insecurity on Governor Makinde.
TPI, the APC group in its statement yesterday, had posited that the state has witnessed an astronomical rise in cases of armed banditry, kidnapping, hoodlum attacks, murder, extra-judicial killings and gang wars, among others as reported daily across the zones of Ibadan, Ibarapa, Oke-Ogun, Ogbomoso and Oyo.
In the statement issued by the group’s Coordinator and Director of Organisation, Mr. Afeez Bolaji and Olawale Sadare respectively, TPI blamed the spate of insecurity in the state on “Governor Makinde’s alleged incompetence, inexperience and grandstanding.”
The statement read in part, “We have watched with dismay how the current PDP administration has failed in the all-important task of securing the lives and property of the people. Things took a frightening dimension from the first day when Makinde did not mince words to indicate his desire to set aside all the fantastic programmes of his predecessor, as it included proper handling of security, for no just reasons other than politics.
“In actual fact, insecurity did not creep into Oyo State naturally as it took its roots from Makinde’s failure to study the system he inherited with a view to improving on it. He neither deemed it necessary to mobilise support from relevant stakeholders nor read a riot act to criminal elements not to heave a sigh of relief as Ajimobi had left the saddle.
“The new governor did not only wait until criminal elements were able to regroup and regain confidence to continue their nefarious activities, he overtly and covertly encouraged hoodlums who he treats as friends of his administration.”
“Another pertinent question here is whether President Muhammadu Buhari had ever stopped him from working together with the Police, Army, NSCDC and other security agencies in the state to sustain or improve upon the achievement of his predecessor especially in the area of security.”
But, the PDP in its reaction, maintained that with the level of investment and support given to security agencies by Governor Makinde, President Muhammadu Buhari, rather than the governor, should be called to question on the failure of the security system across the country, including Oyo State.
Olatunji in the statement insisted that attempts by APC members to pass the buck of the growing insecurity to Governor Makinde are lame, unthoughtful and mischievous.
The party equally faulted the reasoning of the APC on Governor Makinde’s role in the #EndSARS protests, noting that the governor did not in any way err or support hoodlums against security agents as the APC is trying hard to make it look.
“The jobless individuals who authored the said statement should have done their homework to see that whatever security challenges they tried to blow beyond proportion are not peculiar to Oyo State, but are indications of how the security architecture of the country has failed under President Buhari,” the statement said.
The PDP added that Governor Makinde has invested in the security sector more than any of his colleagues or predecessors, but that the overall collapse of the security system in the country “has been denying residents of Oyo State of the benefits of Governor Makinde’s huge investments on security.”