Journalism of Courage

June 5 Owo church massacre: Ondo govt security outfit, Amotekun, to carry sophisticated weapons

.... House of Assembly poised to amend Amotekun law to arm personnel against terrorists

Outraged and devastated by the June 5  terrorists’ bloody attack on Owo church, the Ondo State Government is set to amend the law establishing the state security outfit codenamed Amotekun Corps to empower the personnel to carry arms to deal with insecurity in the state.

When reviewed, the law will also give Amotekun corps access to improved technology and more sophisticated weapons.

Persecondnews recalls that the June 5 terror attack on St. Francis Catholic Church,Owo left about 40 people dead and several others badly injured.

The gunmen had invaded the church during Sunday service, shot sporadically and also used dynamite to destroy the worship centre.

The Chairman of the House of Assembly Committee on Information and Sports, Mr Gbenga Omole, disclosed this at the weekend during a security summit organised by Oka Community in Akoko South-West council area of the state.

“We are looking at the law to give more backing to Amotekun in terms of procurement of more sophisticated weapons and more technology to be deployed,” he said.

Speaking at the summit, the traditional ruler of the town, the Olubaka of Oka Kingdom, Oba Yusuf Adeleye, former magistrate in Lagos State, said security is a collective responsibility of the people.

“This is not the first time we are having this summit but it is important to have this summit now, considering the various security challenges that we have been having and it is important to do this because we have to be vigilant now.

“We have to give kudos to the state government for establishing Amotekun corps and we give kudos to other security operatives.

“What happened in Owo on June 5, where unknown gunmen came to a church and killed over 40 people, is an eye-opener that we have to be up and doing.

“We have to be vigilant; we have to know people around us; we have to take the issue of security serious more than ever because what happened in Owo could happen anywhere. We have to be proactive.”

Also speaking at the summit, a retired Assistant Inspector-General of Police, Adewole Ajakaiye, called for cooperation between the citizens and security agencies.

Meanwhile, as part of efforts to ensure security of lives and property in Oyo State, Gov. Seyi Makinde, has approved the recruitment of additional 500 men for the state’s Western Nigeria Security Network, WNSN, code named Amotekun.

The governor announced this at a monthly security meeting with Local Government Chairmen, Vice Chairmen, heads of security agencies, traditional rulers and other stakeholders, held at House of Chiefs Secretariat, in Ibadan.

He said: “Security is everyone’s business and if we all play our parts well, we will have a safer and more secured environment.

“Although, security of lives and property is paramount responsibility of government but government cannot do it alone except with cooperation of the entire citizenry.

“As we can see from reports all over the country, Oyo State is relatively peaceful, this was not achieved by the effort of government alone but with the efforts of all stakeholders, most especially the security commanders.”

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