BY ANAYO ONUKWUGHA and RICHARD NDOMA |
Officials of Rivers and Akwa Ibom States have said governors in the South-South zone have not abandoned their plan to set up a regional security outfit like their counterparts in the South West and South East regions.
While the South West governors have established Amotekun Corps, those in the South East recently announced the take-off of a new security outfit codenamed Ebube Agu, which means “Fear of a lion” in Igbo language.
An official of the Rivers State government, who pleaded for anonymity, said the plan by the governors of the South-South geopolitical zone to establish a security outfit is on course.
Last February, Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike, said a committee to work out the framework for the establishment of the security outfit had been constituted by the six governors of the zone.
In an interview with LEADERSHIP Friday, the official said, “You know by my position, I am not supposed to speak to the media. But, the issue you raised is still on course. You are aware that a committee was set up by the governors to work out the framework for the security outfit.
“Having seen both the governors of the South West and South East have all set up their security outfits, I believe that by their next meeting, the governors of the South-South must have put everything in place for the new outfit.”
Also, the Cross River State commissioner for information/orientation, Comrade Asu Okang, who spoke on behalf of the state government with LEADERSHIP Friday, said he was sure that the zone would also not be left out of having a regional security outfit despite the challenge of language/dialectic affinity among the people of the region.
He said it was by so doing that the region can afford to be at par with other regions in the country which regional security bodies had become operational.
“The little challenge we have in the South-South is perhaps that we are allowing politics to overrun or outrun our regional integration policy,” Okang said.
The commissioner said even when the state never had issues with coping with internal security, Governor Ben Ayade remained the first state governor that inaugurated the first internal security outfit codenamed “Operation Skolombo”.
Okang stressed that even though he isn’t a member of the regional governors, he can authoritatively state that the idea of forming a regional security outfit had not yet been defeated or abandoned.
On when the people should expect the regional security outfit to take off, the commissioner said, “I do not want to preempt what they are coming up with.”