Oyo state Executive Council has approved the Oyo State Security Network Agency and Amotekun Corp Bill 2020 for onward transmission to the state house of assembly.
The approval was given at the State Executive Council meeting which held at the Executive Chamber of the Governors office, Agodi, Secretariat, Ibadan on Tuesday.
The meeting which lasted for over six hours was presided over by the Chairman, Governor Seyi Makinde and attended by all members including the Deputy Governor, Mr Rauf Olaniyan, the Secretary to the State Government, Mrs Olubanwo Adeosun, the Chief of Staff to the Governor, Chief Bisi Ilaka, and commissioners.
Addressing journalists at the end of the Executive Council meeting, the commissioner for Justice and Attorney General of the Oyo State said the presentation of the bill before the state council followed the earlier approval by the Attorney Generals and Commissioner of Justice of the six Southwest states.
Oyewo was accompanied at the briefing by his counterparts including Dr Wasiu Olatunbosun (Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism), Dr Bashir Bello (Health), Mr Olasunkanmi Olaleye (Education), Governor Makinde’s media aides, Mr Taiwo Adisa (Chief Press Secretary) and Mr Jide Ajani (Special Adviser, Media).
He assured that the State Amotekun Corp will be headed by a state Commandant adding that the bill also allows for collaborative efforts between the six Southwest states should the need arise. He noted that the bill also made provision for Zonal Command operations for the Corp.
He expressed optimism that the bill will get speedy attention from the state lawmakers so that the Governor can also give the required assent in no long time.
Oyewo said “We presented the bill for the creation of the Oyo State Security Network Agency and the Amotekun Corp Bill of 2020.
“As you are well aware, the Amotekun operation or Security outfit had already been launched by the Governors of the Southwestern states. However, it became very clear that there was a need for a legal backing for that operations.
“So, the Attorneys General of the Southwest zone including Oyo, Ogun, Osun, Ekiti, Ondo and Lagos state came together with the intervention of DAWN commission that has been piloting the process, and we are able to have a draft model bill to be adopted by each of the state in accordance with their local circumstances and situations as the need arises.
“So, what you see is that within this week, I know that for instance Ekiti state had already done this, Ogun state had already done this and now Oyo state is doing this, we have the executives approving it for onward transmission to the House of Assembly for purposes of enacting it into law.
“It is a synchronised process that showed that the zone is collaborating with one another. This also has the backing of the Conference of Speakers of the zone and so, it is not surprising that within the week and next week, all these six states within the Southwest zone will have passed the bill into law.
“The gist of the bill is that it establishes a Security Network agency with a board and in Section 3 of it, it specifically allows for the contiguous states within the Southwest to collaborate with each other. So, this bill is to enable the southwest Governors to deliver on their constitutional responsibilities under Section 4 of the 1999 constitutional that imposes the obligation for the protection of lives and property, not only on the federal government but for the state and local government.
“So, we have a situation where these network is established to complement the police and security agencies in the light of the insecurity incidence not only in the Southwest all over Nigeria. It must be noted that the primary obligation for policing in the constitution is vested in the Nigeria Police, but there are also constitutional obligations imposed on the state and government at the local level to ensure security or lives and property and this is what is taking place. It is a complementary Security Network outfit.
“And we have the Amotekun Corp which is also established there under and their operation as it were for the purpose of securing those areas in collaboration or complement with the police and of such miscreants or offenders that are arrested will be handed over to the police and if they violate state laws, they will be prosecuted through the office of the Attorney-General, so it is a symbiotic, corrollative and complementary relationship and it gives room for collaboration within the Southwest which enhances the security operations under the code name of Operation Amotekun.”
He added that the law also made provisions for human right concerns about abuses with a complete mechanism to address such issues to ensure that excesses or any complain is taken in an unbiased atmosphere and quickly dispense to ensure justice is done.
“Of course, the Oyo State Amotekun Corp will have its own Oyo state commander, we do not have an umbrella regional commander, rather we have commanders within each state and Zonal commands within each states that goes down to the local government areas.
“The laws allows for collaborations between the Zonal and state commanders of each state. For instance, Oyo State Commander can collaborate with the Osun State Commander and of course, that can also extend to all the six Southwest states, if there is a common threat that arises within the zone.
“These are some of the highlights of the Amotekun Security Agency that is proposed for enactment into law by the Oyo state House of Assembly. As we speak, the document is been transmitted to the office of the Honorable Speaker, and I believe it will go through the process of parliamentary hearing and passing of the bill into law and we expect that within the shortest period of time, it will be presented for assent by the Governor of the state. This is where we are by the Amotekun law”, Oyewo noted.
On arms bearing, the Commissioner for Justice said “There is a provision in the Amotekun law that is in compliance with the extant laws in Nigeria to bear arms and that is the seeking the President permit, so, you can’t bear arms without permit.”
Also at the meeting, issues of Committee crisis at the Oke Ogun Polytechnic, report of crisis on the centralised Abbaitors and state’s status on Lassa fever and coronavirus were also considered.