Enugu Governor, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, yesterday, briefed critical stakeholders of efforts of his administration to stem the tide of the sudden security challenges and ensure the state retains its status as one of the most peaceful and safest in the country,
Those in attendace at the event during which he gave update on the ongoing recruitment of 1,700 Forest Guards were the House of Assembly-led by Speaker Edward Ubosi, the 17 Local Government Council Chairmen, the Director, Department of State Services (DSS) and all the security chiefs of the agency.
According to the breakdown, 3,963 persons applied for the job; 2,646 were shortlisted and screened; 879 persons engaged while the remaining 821 applicants will be screened and engaged in two weeks.
A source who was privy to the meeting disclosed that the governor and other attendees were determined to ensure that recent security challenges in the state were tackled decisively. It was also revealed that they were eager to make sure that the Forest Guards scheme takes its firm footing in the state.
It said the sate being the first state to commence the Forest Guards operation after it was approved by the South East Governors Forum has shown its commitment to the protection of lives and property.
It disclosed that it was agreed at the meeting that 260 security vehicles should be purchased immediately for the 260 electoral wards in the state, one for each ward. Also agreed was the purchase of 260 motorcycles for security operations, one for each ward, including procurement of communication gadgets to facilitate optimal community policing.
The meeting equally resolved that a Ministry of Security Affairs should be established to coordinate various activities, intelligent gathering and interventions within the new Enugu State security architecture.
It was equally gathered that other far-reaching decisions were taken to consolidate the security operations in the state and ensure that Forest Guards scheme commences in earnest.
Meanwhile, Prelate of the Methodist Church Nigeria, His Eminence, Dr. Samuel’ Emeka Kanu Uche, has expressed delight at the ongoing recruitment of 1,700 Forest Guards by the state to be “specially trained and equipped with arms and ammunitions to fish out miscreants in Enugu State”, stating it was commendable and a right step in the right direction.
The supreme head of the Methodist Church prayed for the governor who he also described as “an ecumenical and friendly governor”, asking God to protect and strengthen him and also “grant you unending wisdom to govern your people aright”.
He also prayed against the security challenges in the state and the country.
“We pray that you (God) bless the governor and his family for us. Evil people will never come around him. Give him the mind of discernment to know when sycophants are talking. Close his ears to sycophants; give him wise counsel always and grant that Enugu State may continue to move forward.