The Governor of Cross River State, Ben Ayade has launched a security outfit called ‘Operation Akpakwu’ to combat the high spate of robberies and kidnappings in the state.
In a statement made available to POLITICS NIGERIA, Ayade disclosed that the operation will ensure that kidnappers and all sorts of criminals will be kept away from the state.
“Earlier today I launched a special security operation code named “Operation Akpakwu” charged with the responsibility of flushing kidnappers, bandits and criminals out of the state.”
“In recent past, the increasing number of crime within the Niger Delta and the country as a whole arising from the difficulty orchestrated by Endsars as well as Covid19 which brought a general poverty and general hardship upon the entire world, with Nigeria not an exception. Given that background, a lot of our citizens have taken to criminality as a means of livelihood, but as a country we have a responsibility to our youths.”
“Nobody in the position of government will be happy to see a young man or woman on the streets without a job. Unfortunately, the falling prices of oil and the attendant consequences has dealt a great blow on our economy.”
“Given that background we have seen rising levels of crime. But as a government we have to be responsible, you recall that in the #EndSars protest, Cross River was very cautious with the use of a kinetic solution to address the challenges of hoodlums and the looting. But today the instruction is very clear from Abuja, you must deal decisively with any form of criminality, you must deal decisively with any form of banditry, cultism, kidnapping of any form.”
“Let this therefore be a strong message to every cross Riverian and non indigenes alike, that as far as you are resident in Cross River State, today is the end of criminality, armed robbery, banditry. It must all end today and we have received very clear instructions from the Federal government and I have supported and I stand strong with all my military men and the police that they must comply with the obligations, instructions and orders of the inspector general of police and the Commander in Chief of the Nigerian armed forces that Cross River State must be made a safe haven.”
“The average Cross Riverian believes in the ecstasies of good life bliss and pleasure, we are not criminals that is why even the security records of all those arrested so far less than one percent of those responsible for kidnapping and armed robbery in Cross River are not from Cross River State. Which is to me a sense of pride that the average Cross Riverian remains that pristine decent man that we know. But time has come where every single Cross Riverian including landlords must account for every tenant as part of the regulations which I had signed into law under the Homeland security. It is the responsibility of government, the police and the military structure under this operation “Akpakwu” to demolish the property of every single house that is being occupied by a kidnapper or any bandit. If the property belongs to the landlord, the landlord will also be held accountable, that is the provision of the law that house must be demolished.”
“Today we have provided about 100 vehicles ten Power bikes, we have provided radio and Super Sonic telecommunications which will not be terrestrial it will be satellite based communication and so you have full connectivity across the entire state. Any single citizen who comes up as a kidnapper the nearest neighbor just needs to notify a particular number which will be distributed and will be announced on radio as soon as this launch is done. As soon as you call the number, the power bikes, the army vehicles, the police vehicles, the Navy vehicles, the Airforce vehicles the civil defense vehicles all of them in their numbers will cordone that area and conduct a massive search until those culprits are arrested.”
“Today if your not licensed to carry a gun, once you are found with a gun in your possession you will pay the full price as provided by the laws. We know clearly that a lot of people have taken to storing arms not for leisure but arms for criminality, today marks the end of all of that.”
“The looting that we experienced in the last month is a thing that should never happen again because the message and instruction is now very clear. It is clear on record that I have done all I can to ensure that the youths are engaged, we have just concluded the recruitment process of 20000 young men and women, in addition, the Cross River State construction and fabrication academy which is aimed at providing jobs for those who have no proper education, so if your certificate cannot give you a job, let your hands let your hadwork give you a job , so the construction and fabrication academy has opened up to employ young Cross Riverians, to teach them carpentry, masonry, glazing, air conditioning repairs and all forms of handwork that can enable you earn a living with independent ease without resorting to criminality, that academy is now admitting students.”
“So as a government, we have decided that young people who school in CRUTECH of Cross River extraction should not pay tuition, I have also extended the NYSC for young Cross Riverians who have not gotten jobs after their NYSC so they can keep getting that stipend pending when they get employment. So as a government we have made adequate provisions for young people but am not idiot proof neither is the government, we don’t have an infinite elastic means of earning income so we are limited by our income but at the same time we are committed by intellectual money to continue to expand the horizon of hope.”
“The prosperity agenda set out for Cross River State cannot manifest except there is peace and security and that’s why today we have decided that security will come first, before salary, security will come first before pension security will come first before every other consideration so that we can bring calabar back to what we know Calabar for “Peace and tranquility” a place where you come and live and be at rest that is what we know Calabar for.”
“To provide for you under amnesty. The Bakassi strike force that voluntarily under the request of federal government surrendered their arms, I must say till today that federal government has not accepted and admitted them into the amnesty program.”
“We want to ask federal government to explain to us why the Bakassi strike force as not been given proper restitution, rehabilitation reintegration as they have done in other states. This has been part of the restiveness in Calabar, I therefore use this opportunity to speak to President Buhari, the NSA, the COAS, the CDS, that upon their own request the government of Cross River State partnered with federal government to receive and accept the arms from the Bakassi strike force why three years after they have been left hungry without any care it is unfair, it is unacceptable it is not Afropolitan it is not Afrocentric if you have pushed somebody to the point that he has surrendered you have a duty to give him protection. I plead in the name of God that the Bakassi strike force should be admitted into amnesty so that they can have their due be properly trained so they can be citizens that will bring value to society.”
“I therefore ask every law abiding citizen to please go about your businesses because “Operation Akpakwu” is properly equipped to block every section from satellite town to Atimbo to Calabar south, down to 8miles to every single section where the security report shows high volatility they are all going to marked down so if you know that you want to stay and see this Christmas, if you know that you don’t want to spend your Christmas behind bars if you know that you are a proud son or daughter of your parents and you don’t want to be an embarrassment to your family, stay out of crime surrender your guns to the police and we will find a way to provide for you under amnesty.”