The Special Adviser to Oyo State Governor on Security Matters, Fatai Owoseni, has explained that vigilante groups have been adopted and recruited into the ‘Operation Amotekun’.
The South-West security outfit, Operation Amotekun, was launched by the governors of South-western states on Thursday in a bid to have an integrated approach in fighting crimes in the region.
Speaking on Channels Television Sunrise Daily, Mr Owoseni said that before the narratives came out properly from the governors, so many people had corrupted what ‘Amotekun’ means, and it was only right to set the records straight.
He described the personnel who will be working with the Police as ‘vigilante’, and Southwest is a network formalising them.
The security expert used Oyo state as a point of reference, intimating that the police command has been working with the vigilante groups, and they are registered at each area commands.
“People decided to corrupt the interpretation of what it is, people were just jittery. The summary of it is that it is an enlargement of what Lagos is doing, the Neighbourhood watch. We have enlarged the scope and integrated in the southwest, so call it Neighbourhood watch Southwest Vigilante.
“The problem had always been that they have supported security activities and government don’t bother or know about their existence, so they are now formalizing them, making them officially recognised and providing those tools with which they will work with.
“So what the Southwest is doing is that they have recognised them formally, captured them into the security architecture and provide for them by buying equipment and pep talk because they are already trained,” he added.
The former police commissioner in Lagos and Benue state stated that it is not cast on a stone that the Vigilante’s will carry guns, but if necessary, such an approach will be adopted.
“Nobody has said that they will be armed and even in our different areas, we have the vigilantes who carry Dane guns and if it is necessary for the Amotekun personnel to carry Dane guns because the hunters do so with their dogs, those are their tools and it is not illegal; they are not going after anyone, in security architecture, they are local human intelligence, they work with the conventional security groups.
“With the guidelines, the DFID had written for the police, part of it is that each of the locality, the DPO must have their register but before it wasn’t formalised and now it has been formalised, not only have their names and addresses, you can capture them biometrically, so each of them will have identity cards.”
Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde, says he takes responsibility for the fire incident that razed the Akesan market in Oyo State last week Sunday.
He said this on Wednesday after visiting the site of the incident alongside his cabinet members.
Makinde also assured that the State Government would rebuild the market and provide support to all victims of the fire incident.
He added that rather than engage in buck-passing over the failure of the past administration to provide necessary fire-fighting tools, he would take responsibility for the failure of the system.
“I must, at this point, express my deep sadness over the loss of lives and property because of the various fire outbreaks in Oyo State. This is deeply regretted. Of course, things happen that signal the failure in our system.
“I swore an oath to protect the lives and property of everyone living within the borders of this State, so I take full responsibility for this failure and promise that I will make things right,” the governor said.
Makinde noted that an investigative panel had already been set up to look into both the remote and immediate causes of the inferno.
According to him, the state government has commenced the process of acquiring an additional 10 fire-fighting trucks to boost fire-fighting services in the State. The governor also urged residents to be safety-conscious with regards to the prevention of fire outbreaks considering the current weather condition.
The Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi while receiving the governor at his palace said he believed Governor Makinde would fulfil his promise to rebuild the market.
The monarch, who went into a brief history of the market said to have been in existence for 400 years.
He called on the Government to consider returning the market to the Palace for control and management as it was in the past, for effective management.
Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde, has signed the state’s 2020 Appropriation Bill into Law.
He assented to the bill on Monday at a brief ceremony which held inside the State’s Executive Council Chambers of the Government House in Ibadan, the state capital.
The governor’s assent to the bill heralds the beginning of preparations for the 2020 fiscal year.
In his remarks, Governor Makinde was explained that the budget which was increased by over N4 billion by the state House of Assembly targeted a minimum of 70 per cent implementation.
He was confident that the budget would achieve landmark infrastructural development in the state.
The Governor commended members of the State House of Assembly for promptly scrutinising and passing the proposed budget in order to accelerate its implementation to start from the beginning of the next year.
He noted that the drafting of the budget was holistic in nature as everyone in all the nooks and crannies of the state was carried along.
The total amount passed by the state House of Assembly was N213.78 billion, an increase of N4.9 billion compared to the budget proposal submitted.
Governor Makinde revealed that the top four sectors with the highest budgetary allocations are infrastructure – 23.93 per cent, education 22.37 per cent, health – 5.18 per cent, and agriculture – is 4.1 per cent.
He hinted that all the civil servants would receive their 13th-month salary by December 28, 2019.
On his part, Speaker of the Assembly, Adebo Ogundoyin, explained that the increase of over N4 billion was targeted at the development of grassroots areas.
Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde, has declared a state of emergency on refuse collection and waste management in the state.
The governor’s decision follows the re-appearance of refuse and filth on streets in the state.
Makinde during an extraordinary meeting at the Executive Council Chambers in Ibadan, the state capital, said waste management has become a matter of emergency, adding that poor waste management could have wider implications on the state of health of individuals in the state.
“I am sure that most of you must have gone through our state and have noticed that as far as our solid waste management is concerned, we are all living in the midst of filth basically.
“Apart from these wastes being an eyesore, it also has wider implications as far as health is concerned, because when you have a filthy environment, all kinds of health challenges will come in. We need to declare an emergency on our solid waste management. It is a big issue for all of us and we have to take the bull by the horn. We have to take leadership.
“What I have asked to be done is to, first of all, mobilize all resources possible and we will all be out this evening (Monday evening) to do the cleanup. We have trucks and have mobilized workers and we will take off,” he said.
Makinde also warned that no one should misconstrue the exercise for showmanship, adding that a serious issue like waste disposal has to be taken with all seriousness.
“This is not for showmanship but a serious challenge that we have. If we don’t do it, I can bet that a few weeks down the line, we will see the impact at our hospitals.
“I have also heard that there are saboteurs who neatly arrange thrash on the median. Well, I wish them luck because we now have security personnel involved and anyone caught importing waste to Oyo State will be dealt with according to our environmental laws.
“I believe, from our projection, that within the next three to four weeks, we should have a permanent solution in place, a model that will be sustainable and that will also be full-proof for the saboteurs.”
The Court of Appeal sitting in Ibadan has affirmed the victory of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship candidate in the state and validated the appeal of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The court of appellate jurisdiction says it disagrees with the tribunal judgement on grounds that the documents submitted were not properly processed while the evidences submitted by the appellant was not adequately evaluated.
It further stated that this however does not give sufficient grounds to tamper with the victory of Seyi Makinde as declared by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The Court of Appeal also ordered that status quo before the tribunal’s judgment should remain, which is the return and declaration of Makinde as winner of the March 9,2019 governorship poll in Oyo State.
The court held that if not for time, it would have ordered a re-trial at the tribunal, noting that unfortunately, the time limit of 180 days for tribunal had been exhausted.
The Court of Appeal found that the judgement of the lower tribunal that dismissed Adebayo Adelabu of the APC’s petition against Makinde’s election as the governor was perversed and therefore set the judgement aside.
But the Court of Appeal did not make any further order concerning the election of Seyi Makinde and did not make any order for re- hearing of the election petition, and that the status quo as the time of filing the petition by Adelabu should remain.
Electoral Act allows a grace of 180 days for the petition to be heard at the tribunal, which affirmed that the tribunal duly spent her time and so nothing could be done on their pronouncement as to the validity of the election.
Three of the four-person panel of the Court of Appeal resolved 3 major issues in the favour of the appellants. But there was a dissenting judgment from a judge with a proviso that the panel could not nullify Makinde’s election.
The lead counsel to Makinde, Eyitayo Jegede (SAN), told journalists after the delivery of the judgment that the declaration of Makinde as governor “has not been affected in any way. The Court of Appeal in their wisdom said they did not agree with the lower tribunal. They did not also say that they did not agree with INEC. So, INEC’s declaration is sacrosanct and it remains until any other pronouncement from the court.
“We have not seen the details of the judgment. We were all in court and you (journalists) saw that the details were not read to us. As far as we are concerned, there is no cause for alarm.”
Fielding questions from reporters on the implications of the judgment of Governor Makinde, Jegede said: “There is no implication on the return and declaration of Seyi Makinde as the governor of Oyo State.”
Counsel to Adelabu and APC, Adeboye Shobanjo, also told journalists: “You listened to what my lord said about the evaluation of judgment of evidence that when there are evidence before the court, the evidence of all parties before the court should be evaluated. Judgment should not be based only on the evidence of a party in a case and if that was done during the trial, or during the judgment, that is contrary to the provision of the constitution on fair hearing.
“Second, this court settled the issue of dumping of documents on election cases, and contrary to the decision of the tribunal that all the documents tendered by the appellants were dumped on the tribunal. The judgment made it known that the documents were not dumped on the tribunal.
“In totality, the appeal was allowed. But my lord said that because of effusion of time, that since the time for trial has lapsed at the tribunal, they cannot order for retrial of the case.
“But generally or totally, the appeal was allowed. It showed that the judgment of the tribunal occasioned miscarriage of justice against the appellants.”
When asked to comment if Adelabu wnd APC would proceed to the Supreme Court, Shobanjo simply said: “The next step depends on my clients. They will brief us accordingly and it depends on instructions.”
Meanwhile, the APC in Oyo State has reaffirmed its strong belief in the judiciary as the pillar of hope for the sustenance of democracy, saying Adelabu and the party would approach the Supreme Court for final settlement of the litigation.
While reacting to the judgment through a statement issued by its Assistant Publicity Secretary, Prince Ayobami Adejumo, Oyo APC lauded the Appellate Court’s Judges for their pronouncement which validated the claims of the plaintiffs in the matter before it but “regretted that the good people of the state would still have to wait for the final adjudication on the case before our candidate could reclaim his mandate.
“The verdict given on Monday was unambiguous, apt and sound enough to convince any informed mind about the genuineness of our claim that Makinde’s declaration as the winner of the March 9 poll was done by INEC in error. The results announced were ridiculously inflated and there is no way such conspiracy could stand the test of proper scrutiny as this was just confirmed by the Appellate Court
“While we use this opportunity to salute the court for living up to its responsibility as the last hope of the common man, we are appealing to the good people of the state including Oyo APC faithful and other key stakeholders to remain calm and resist being provoked, in whatever way or form, by the PDP government and its agents who are apparently occupying the Agodi Government House on a borrowed time.
“Obviously, the next line of action is for us as a Party and our gubernatorial hopeful to approach the Supreme Court for perfection of the landmark verdict delivered by the Court of Appeal today and, by the special Grace of God, we shall obtain favorable judgment from the Apex Court as only this would lend credence to the fact Nigeria’s democratic practice is premised on free and fair elections as well as the rule of law.”
A total of 259 people have been liberated from another detention facility uncovered by the Oyo State Police Command in Ibadan, the state capital, and handed over to the government.
Among those rescued were 34 females, 10 children and an infant.
Operators of the facility, located at the Olore area along the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway at Ojoo, claim it is a correctional centre for delinquents.
However, the Police Commissioner, Oyo State Command, Shina Olukolu, who led a team from his command along with state government officials, frowned at the deplorable condition of some of the people held at the centre, and promised to bring the perpetrators to book.
The police boss said he and his men stormed the centre after a young man informed a divisional police officer (DPO) under his command of its existence.
He said the young man who tipped the police off told the DPO that the centre was being run by someone who claimed to have the powers to be able to change the anti-social behaviours of youngsters and others.
“The young man said they were being maltreated, not being well-fed, being treated like slaves and they are engaged in false labour and, sometimes, their death is not reported to anybody,” the Police Commissioner added.
Lamenting the discovery and the need to ensure that more people do not operate such centres, he told reporters that a thorough investigation will be carried out/
“This area will be secured and the police will be able to do further investigation, further search, and anyone at all who is found culpable will definitely be arrested, investigated and prosecuted diligently to serve as a warning to others who may want to operate such houses that serve as illegal detention centres,” the commissioner said.
Oyo State Government has revealed plans to construct five new model schools across the three senatorial districts of the state.
A statement by the Commissioner of Information, Culture and Tourism, Dr Wasiu Olatunbosun, explained that this was in line with the 2018 intervention project in conjunction with Federal Government’s Universal Basic Education Board.
The Chairman of Oyo State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), Dr Nureni Adeniran, made the announcement during a prequalification exercise for the 2018 FGN-UBEC/OYOSUBEB intervention projects in Ibadan.
He noted that the projects would be awarded to qualified contractors among the 76 applicants who applied for the pre-qualification exercise.
Dr Adeniran listed the beneficiary schools to include Methodist Primary School, Bodija in Ibadan North Local Government Area (LGA); and St. Paul’s Primary School, Yanbule in Ibadan North East (LGA).
Others are Methodist Primary School, Arowomole, Ogbomosho South LGA; Community Primary School, Airport, Ona-Ara LGA; and Muslim Grammar (Jnr) School, Odinjo, Oluyole LGA.
The SUBEB boss affirmed that the present administration would ensure equity, fairness and objectivity in the award of these contracts.
“The anomalies observed in the award of contracts by the last administration through awards of 64 and 72 projects to a single contractor is a thing of the past, as our administration is guided by fairness, equity, transparency and accountability,” he was quoted as saying in the statement.
Dr Adeniran commended the state governor, Mr Seyi Makinde, for his bid to enhance education delivery and access to basic education in the state.
According to him, this is made manifest through the governor’s immediate intervention in the education sector through the budgetary increment of the sector.
The SUBEB chairman also reiterated the government’s determination to terminate payment of legal and illegal fees in public schools.
He added that the newly introduced extra-mural classes for JSS3 and SS3 students would improve the academic performances of the students tremendously.
The governorship election petition tribunal in Oyo state is currently sitting to deliver judgement on the petition filed by the candidate of the All Progressives congress (APC), Adebayo Adelabu challenging the victory of governor Seyi Makinde of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the March governorship election.
The tribunal had in August admitted the final written addresses of governor Makinde of the PDP, Mr Adelabu of the APC and the Independent National Electoral Commission.
The counsel to INEC asked the tribunal to dismiss the petition for being grossly unmeritorious and lacking in substance.
He insisted that the petitioners complained of irregularities in 1,334 polling units and only called 38 polling unit agents out of which majority of them confirmed that the election conducted by INEC complied strictly with the electoral act.
The counsel to governor Makinde had also faulted the relief by the petitioners claiming they amount to hearsay and asked the court to dismiss the petition.
But counsel to Mr Adelabu and the APC, Yusuf Alli is insisting that the petition is meritorious and that other witness not called have their statement properly laid before the tribunal.
Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde, has challenged his political aides to be committed to the efforts of his administration to deliver the dividends of democracy to the people of the state.
He made the demand on Sunday in his closing remarks at the end of a two- day executive retreat for members of his cabinet and senior aides at the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA) in Ibadan, the state capital.
“For our permanent secretaries and political office holders, it still remains ‘soldier go, soldier come’ but the barrack remains.
“How many governors have you seen their backs? You will see the back of this government too. But your commitment to the success of this administration must not waiver,” the governor was quoted as saying in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Taiwo Adisa.
Governor Makinde further stressed the need for political appointees and top officials of the state civil service to work in harmony.
He stated that collective responsibility must be the watchword for success to be achieved and gave assurance that the civil servants would be empowered to do their job but not without accountability.
The governor said, “We are making a pact with you that the current administration will empower you. We will give you those responsibilities. We will give you the authority to carry them out but we demand from you accountability.”
“I know that the pertinent question that is probably agitating your mind right now is that, will the system be fair to you? I make bold to say that, under my watch, absolutely.
“So, my appeal to everybody is, come with me, let us create a new prosperous Oyo State together and God will help us,” he added.
On measures being put in place to develop the state, Governor Makinde explained that his administration has a 20-year agenda to save Oyo from underwhelming performances.
He acknowledged the efforts of past governments but insisted that his administration was setting a high bar for development objectives.
Governor Makinde said, “We have been underachieving for many years … within the shortest possible time, we have to put in place a strategic development plan for Oyo State.
“Administrations have come and gone but operated on ad-hoc basis; we will put in place a 15 to 20-year Development plan for Oyo State. We will be bullish about our development plans.”
The governor further clarified, “Of course, according to the mandate right now it is for four years. So, what I mean is, we have to put up a plan or vision in which successive administrations won’t really need to go back and do the hard work again.
“We will do the hard work, and I have a feeling that we used to have some authentic heroes amongst us here. Because when we are done, maybe the leadership of the next administration is here with us. So, we should not take anything for granted.”
The immediate past governor of Oyo State, Abiola Ajimobi, has lost his bid to become a senator at the Election Petitions Tribunal sitting in Ibadan.
The Tribunal on Tuesday dismissed the petition of the former governor challenging the victory of Senator Kola Balogun in the Ibadan South senatorial district election.
Having completed two tenures as governor of Oyo State, Ajimobi joined the tussle for the Ibadan South seat in the upper chamber of the National Assembly on the platform of the All Progressives Congress.
The former governor was, however, defeated by Senator Balogun of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the February 23 elections.
In a ruling that lasted about three hours, a three-man panel led by Justice Anthony Akpovi dismissed Ajimobi’s petition and held that he failed to prove all the allegations of corruption against the lawmaker.
Justice Akpovi noted that a margin of 13,502 votes between the votes cast for Senator Balogun and the former governor, adding that the discrepancy of 11,759 votes alleged by the APC was far lesser than the difference.
He held that even if the 11,759 was deducted from the total difference of 13,502 votes, Senator Balogun still led by 1,743 votes.
The judge also stated that the APC candidate rested his case on card reader malfunction but the Tribunal held that a card reader malfunction cannot invalidate the accreditation of voters.
He, thereafter, dismissed the petition challenging the election of the lawmaker.
In a related development, the Tribunal in another judgement delivered by Justice Sambo Daka upheld the victory of Senator Fatai Buhari in the Ibadan North senatorial district election.
It dismissed the petition filed by a former Majority Leader in the House of Representatives, Mulikat Akande, challenging Buhari’s election.
Justice Daka held that Adeola and her party, PDP failed to prove their case beyond reasonable doubt to warrant cancellation of the election held in the senatorial district.