Two security experts on Monday weighed in on the validity of the newly inaugurated security outfit, Amotekun.
The outfit is a creation of southwest governors saddled with curbing incidences of armed robbery, kidnapping, and other criminal acts.
The security experts, both of whom are retired commissioners of police, said they believe the outfit will complement the efforts of the police and other state security outfits in the fight to curb crime and the security of life and property.
Ibe Agharaya, a former Commissioner of Police in Lagos State, told NAN the idea of community police which underlies the creation of Amotekun is advantageous. This is because it will foster partnership, collaboration, transparency, and consent with the communities in tracking and arresting criminals.
He said, “Amotekun is a modernised system of collaboration and partnership between the regular security agencies and the community for security purpose within a given area.
“With the type of warlike campaign, elections, tribalism and religious bigotry, we need such policing system to be adopted for securing lives and property.
“This system is particularly effective in the prevention of crimes, particularly on the highways, where armed robbery and kidnapping usually take place.”
Agharaya further asked police commissiners in the region to provide the necessary tools and weaponry required to ensure efficient exchange of information and quick response to incidents of crime.
“No policeman will enter the bush in the night to look for kidnappers because of lack of basic equipment such as night goggles, good body armour and substantial gas to smoke them out.
“However, the hunters and the indigenes of any given area will understand the terrain and can enter the bush with the assistance of the police.
“So, the introduction of the security system in the South-western states is a good strategy to prevent crime,” the retired commissioner said.
He also advised the inclusion of fulani who live in the region. This, according to him, can help avert friction that usually sparks into violence between herders and farmers. He asked people to disabuse themselves of the notion that Amotekun was created to stop herdsmen.
Fatai Owoseni, a retired and former Commissioner of Police in Lagos state, also spoke with NAN. For him, Amotekun is one of many steps towards achieving a more secure geopolitical zone.
He reiterated Ibe’s position that the security outfit is not a new idea and that it will complement the efforts of the police and other state security agencies.
“For instance, although not in security matters the North Eastern Development Commission helps in rebuilding the North East, the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) helps to develop the Niger Delta.
“So, nothing stops the Southwest from having a development agenda that will incorporate security matters,” Owoseni said.