The South-West governors will meet President Muhammadu Buhari, over the Federal Government’s declaration of the Western Nigeria Security outfit, Operation Amotekun, as illegal.
It was gathered that the talks with the President would be preceded by a meeting of the South-West governors this week.
The Attorney General of the Federation, Mr Abubakar Malami, SAN, had on Tuesday said Operation Amotekun was illegal, adding that the Federal Government was not carried along while the security outfit was being planned.
According to a source, it was made known that the,” Governors will definitely meet this week and it is in their meeting that they will decide when to meet the President on the matter. One thing that is sure is that there is no going back on that project because it is a project that is being embraced by the entire South-West and other regions.”
The Ondo State Governor, Mr Rotimi Akeredolu, again on Wednesday defended Operation Amotekun, saying it was not a paramilitary outfit.
He said, “The security of our people is very paramount to us. That is why you voted us in. Operation Amotekun is to complement the efforts of the armed forces and the police.
“So we are on very sound legal grounds, and we will pursue this to a logical conclusion. Operation Amotekun is one of the solutions we can proffer to the security challenges in the South-Western Nigeria.
“The activities of the personnel working for the outfit have not come out and someone sat in his office and said they are paramilitary. How did he come to that conclusion?”
The Oyo State Gov, Mr Seyi Makinde, The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, and others, lampoon Malami for declaring Operation Amotekun illegal.
The Popular Nigerian Playwright, Wole Soyinka, at a press conference in Lagos on Wednesday, advised those he said were sleeping when Nigerians were being killed to return to sleep. He berated Malami for declaring Operation Amotekun illegal.
“There may be criticisms here and there. That’s normal. It’s expected. There will be fears that this might be misused. There are possibilities of correction. But to say that a people don’t have a right to defend their lives, to secure their means of livelihood, to flush out the evil elements among themselves. I am talking about ritual killers, kidnappers, armed robbers and 419ners.’’
The Nobel laureate described as enemy action, unpatriotic and inhuman to brand the security initiative as illegal when the people wanted to tackle what the existing security unit had been unable to check.
He further stated, “I prefer to believe that the government itself has not spoken. I refuse to believe that any serious government which cares for its citizenry will raise an objection to this kind of initiative. Whether they raise it or not, Amotekun has come to stay. Amotekun is a creation of people about humanity not about legalism.
“Amotekun is only a part of the story. We all know the criminality derived from many causes among them poverty, hunger, desperation, sense of alienation. Amotekun should not just be about crime prevention. It should not be the only solution to insecurity and criminality.
There have to be initiatives for the amelioration of the impoverished condition of our people. We should move from Amotekun to Arosikun. Both should be complementary. In other words, we should start thinking in terms of how to feed our own people.
We must think outside the normal parameters of productivity and distribution. Hunger is real. Poverty is real and it is very much with us… Amotekun yes, Arosikun; we think also of the needs of the stomach. And those who promoted it would know very well whose stomachs they were looking after. I prefer just Arosikun. Amotekun and Arosikun both combined to end criminality once and for all in our community.’’
Soyinka, who noted that the country’s was battling insecurity, urged the Federal Government to drop false pride and seek international help.