Following the killings in Igangan area of Oyo State by officials of the Nigeria Customs Service (NSC), the state’s governor, Seyi Makinde has threatened not to return seized weapons used for the killings, insisting that federal operatives must inform states before carrying out any operation.
The governor who was reacting to the recent crisis that rocked Igangan and its environs in Ibarapa local government area of the state, noted that some operatives of the Nigeria Customs Service had arrested suspected smugglers in the community, leading to a face-off between the operatives and the residents who mistook the operatives for the belligerent herdsmen and resisted the arrest.
The incident led to the death of the Coordinator of Amotekun in Ibarapa Central Zone, and two other people.
Commenting on the development, Governor Makinde threatened to withhold the weapon seized from the operatives who invaded the community until he gets the attention of the Federal Government.
Addressing some Muslims serving in his administration when they visited him for the Eid-el-Kabir celebration, the governor said recent data indicated an improved security situation in Oyo State, following various security measures the government had taken.
He said part of the measures was the instruction to local government chairmen to involve traditional rulers as well as other voluntary residents in policing their areas.
Makinde explained that the initiative amounts to spending N330 million in the 33 local government areas, besides other efforts the state government had put in place to tighten security.
“On security, most of the data in the past months shows that things are now improving. The Igangan incident, some days ago, was only falsified by some people who were saying that Fulani herdsmen had invaded Igangan again. The truth is actually about the NCS and smugglers. They know each other.
“Customs officials were accused of having entered Igangan, which is not a border town. But we are working with Federal authorities and they have arrested most of them.
“The gun that was collected is still with us. I said I won’t release it until I get the attention of the Federal authorities.
“In the Constitution of Nigeria, Oyo State is a federating unit. We are not saying federal agencies should not carry out their operations here. But they must tell us; they must inform us. They may not disclose the details of the operation to us, but we must know about it.’’