A socio-cultural group, Tiwa n Tiwa L’Osun Development Association has tasked South West governors on the need to form a regional cohesion, in order to tackle the current insecurity ravaging the region.
The group expressed concern over the general insecurity around the country and recent rate of kidnappings and banditry in all the states that make up the zone.
According to a statement signed by the group’s founder and ex-Osun guber aspirant, Kunle Rasheed Adegoke, (K Rad), while congratulating Nigerians on the June 12 anniversary and its total recognition by the Buhari administration, charged the South West governors on the need to form a regional cohesion to curb the ugly trend which is engulfing the region.
The group particularly advised the Osun State governor, Gboyega Oyetola, to double security efforts in some identified red zones noted for notorious kidnapping and other nefarious activities in the state.
“In the past few months, the organised crime of kidnapping that seemed only a distant rumble has finally landed in the south west region of Nigeria in its most violent and cruel form.
“Events in the past one year have been extraordinary in a trend of worsening spectre.
In Osun, Oyo, Ondo, Ekiti and Ogun states, incidents of kidnapping for ransom is eviscerating the region with lives lost, women raped and people deeply traumatised. We note with particular interest the situation in Osun State with emphasis on the following areas: Osun portion of the Akure-Ilesa expressway; Erinmo-Itawure-Eti Oni-Esa Oke axis, Iwo-Ede-Osogbo road; and Ibokun junction on Ilesa-Osogbo road.
“Evidently, this situation cannot be allowed to continue for a moment longer. We strongly believe that it is now time to rise as a people to confront and halt this cruel decimation, humiliation and affliction of our people. While we note that the rampaging criminal activity lends itself to a raft of political conspiracy theories, we want to remain on the track of the need to keep our people safe both in their homes and on the roads to earn their daily bread.
“After a careful consideration and investigation of reported incidents and the means by which they were carried out, and while commending the Governor of Osun State, Oyetola, on the recent step he reportedly took towards addressing this criminal activity in the state, we hereby recommend that the governor and the Speaker of the State House of Assembly co-host an interactive session with the people of the state and the Press on the matter. This, we believe, will give authentic feedback with respect to other crimes unsuspected or un-profiled.
“We also call on the state government to ensure, as a matter of existential urgency, that a 30-meter setback along each of the roads in the aforementioned areas is cleared of all trees and undergrowth. This will make both ambush and escape harder for the criminals, just as it will give the security forces an advantage against the perpetrators of the dastardly acts. It will also enable potential victims to detect suspicious convergence along the roads and quickly plot an escape.
“The section of the Akure-Ilesa expressway should also be cleared of side bushes up to Owena, the boundary town between Osun and Ondo states.
“We equally call for an expanded stakeholders’ meeting comprising all elected officials in the state, selected opinion leaders, retired military service men and women, retired police officers, traditional rulers, religious leaders among others, with the aim of deliberating on setting up community-based task forces which are to work with the police authorities and other security operatives across the state.”