Professor Itse Sagay on Wednesday described as legal the creation of Operation Amotekun, the security outfit, by the southwestern governors.
He said it is the governors’ constitutionally guaranteed right as the chief security officers of their respective states.
This position taken by the chairman of Presidential Advisory Committee against Corruption (PACAC) contradicts that of the attorney-general of the federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami (SAN). Malami had on Tuesday declared the security outfit illegal.
According to Sagay, the police force does not have the requisite number of men to protect every Nigerian and his property.
“I am positively disposed towards it. I think it is a good beginning not to depend completely on the Federal Government for our security,” he told The Nation.
He argued that more is achieved when those who “feel the pain” are the ones on charge of the situation.
“We know that the Police are few. They are stretched. We have about 250,000 policemen in a country of almost 200 million. So, I think these regional security institutions are necessary.
“I believe the police should cooperate with them and help with their training. And I believe eventually, they should even be armed so that we can have a lot more hands and local people involved in security.”
He disproved claims that Amotekun is a form of state police, adding that nothing in the Constitution “precludes either states or association of states from taking care of their security”.