The Southwest Regional Security Operation code-named; Operation Amotekun has finally been adopted by Governors of all states in the Southwest and Inspector General of Police (IGP), Muhammed Adamu.
The Southwest Governors’ Forum told IGP Adamu in Lagos on Thursday, February 13; that the development would spring up fresh efforts to secure local communities.
Rotimi Akeredolu, Chairman of the Forum and Governor of Ondo State had convened the security meeting at the instance of the IGP.
The meeting was held at the Banquet Hall of the Lagos State Government in Alausa.
At the end of the meeting, which held for about two hours behind closed doors; the IGP and representatives of each State approved the framework of Amotekun.
However, the initiative will not be run as a regional security operation, as initially suggested. It will be a state-led effort, the IGP said.
Also, the meeting ratified the community policing model proposed by the IGP; thereby complementing conventional police operations in all local communities.
The host and Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, said the security gathering was part of extensive meetings with the police leadership on adopting new strategies and initiatives; towards securing lives and property of people in the Southwest.
“I will continue to champion initiatives and frameworks that continue to provide support and logistics required for effective policing in the region,” Sanwo-Olu explained.
Akeredolu said the meeting was of “great importance” to the people of Southwest; confirming that the Forum had a fruitful discussion with the IGP.
Speaking on the outcome, Akeredolu said: “The Governors of Southwest and the IGP have held a very fruitful discussion and it is clear now to all of us that; community policing, which the Nigeria Police is anchoring is one that will benefit all of us.
“In addition, we have spoken and we want everyone to know that Amotekun was not conceived as regional police; but a state-based security outfit.
“We have come out of this meeting happy and we have agreed on the resolution. We have shed lights on dark areas and we are on the same page with the police with respect to these issues.”
IGP Adamu substantiated Akeredolu’s claim; saying the participants at the meeting had fine-tuned Operation Amotekun and adopted it to be state-led initiative and not regional.
He said: “This is the second meeting we have held with the Governors of the Southwest region; concerning the creation of Operation Amotekun. The just-concluded meeting was to discuss and fine-tune Amotekun.
“Amotekun is not a regional security outfit. Every state has one form of security arrangement, whether it is a vigilante or neighbourhood watch that is working security agencies in the states to fight crime.
“Amotekun is not different from these initiatives. We have agreed that community policing strategy be infused into the Amotekun structure; so that policing will be initiative of the community members.”
Adamu said the police would be part of the recruitment, training, and deployment of personnel to be assigned for Amotekun operations; adding that the initiative would work in complementary with the community policing model.