Amotekun: South West Suspends Recruitment

The planned recruitment of personnel and further implementation of the blueprint for the South West regional security outfit named Amotekun are now on hold, a PREMIUM TIMES report reads.
It was gathered that some states had already fine-tuned the processes of recruitment before the controversial notification by the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, declaring the outfit as illegal.

The posture of the government towards Amotekun sparked regional protests in condemnation of the federal government’s stance.

It was the argument by its proponents that Amotekun would be the antidote for the intractable kidnapping and ritual killings which had become regular tales in the South-west region.

They also argued that its complementary role would facilitate the fight against crime and help the statutory security agencies become effective in curbing crime in the region.

With the memo from Mr Malami, coupled with fears expressed by some sections of the country, the South-west governors met with Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, on Thursday, in Abuja with a view to removing the obstacles to the initiative.

One of the critical resolutions reached at the end of the meeting was the need to back Amotekun with an enabling law by the states involved.

An official of the Osun State Government told PREMIUM TIMES on Friday that the conclusion from the meeting with the vice president resulted in the hosting of the attorneys general from the six states in Ibadan on Thursday to determine the nature of the legal framework for the security outfit.

The meeting which was hosted by the Oyo State Commissioner for Justice, Oyewole Oyewo, immediately constituted a three-member committee to provide a legal working document for the states.

Ismail Omipidan, Chief Press Secretary to the Osun State Governor, said another meeting has been scheduled for the next two weeks in Ibadan where further resolutions would be made on the matter.

PREMIUM TIMES gathered that the attorney’s general would in the next meeting seek the inputs of the Development Agenda for Western Nigeria (DAWN) Commission before finally preparing the necessary documents for onward transfer to the Houses of Assembly of each of the states.

It has however been confirmed that activities on Amotekun, particularly recruitment, would have to wait until the legal framework was put in place.

The Commissioner for Information, Ekiti State, Muyiwa Olumilua, confirmed that all procedures on the implementation of the security initiative would wait until the legal backing was in place.

“You are aware that the governors just had a meeting with the Vice President and the Attorney General of the Federation regarding the security outfit,” he said.

“The fall out of that meeting is for us to try to put the necessary legal framework in place. That one will come before the recruitment process.”

Mr Olumilua could however not state how long it would take to conclude the legal framework. He urged citizens to be patient as the state government’s attempt to produce a well-designed framework.

Meanwhile, the Speakers of the Houses of Assembly of the states, who also met with the attorneys-general of the states, have promised to give speedy consideration to the bill when presented for enactment.

The governors of the states officially launched Amotekun on January 9 and many Amotekun branded vehicles donated by the sates have been assembled for deployments.

The DAWN Commission has also said it would soon come out with the standard operating procedures for the states to implement.

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