…meets traditional rulers, vigilante groups, others

The Edo State Acting Governor, Rt. Hon. Comr. Philip Shaibu, on Tuesday, said the government is rejigging the state’s security architecture and strengthening partnerships with relevant stakeholders to bolster the government’s efforts at combating crime in the state.

Shaibu disclosed this ahead of a closed-door meeting with traditional rulers, DPOs, vigilante groups, hunters and other security stakeholders from the 18 local government areas of the state to examine the security challenges facing the state in the last week.

The Acting Governor said the state is stepping up intelligence gathering and surveillance to tackle insecurity in the state.

He said, “Our peace has been disturbed in the last one week and we would not allow that in Edo State. For us in Edo State, we are stepping up our intelligence gathering and surveillance systems to keep the state safe. The issue of security is everybody’s responsibility and it is only through a collaborative effort that we can overcome the security challenges in the state.

L-R: Director, Directorate of State Services, Clara Olika; Edo State Commissioner of Police, Abutu Yaro; Edo State Acting Governor, Rt Hon. Comrade Philip Shaibu; Chief of Staff to Edo State Governor, Hon. Osaigbovo Iyoha; Commissioner for Local Government Affairs, Hon. Osaigbovo Monday, during a meeting with security stakeholders from the 18 local government areas of Edo State at the Government House, in Benin City, on Tuesday, July 5th, 2022.

“We had a security meeting with religious leaders on Monday and we had a lot of feedback and opinions on how to go about securing the state. Today, we have invited traditional rulers, vigilante groups, hunters, DPOs, Head of Service in the 18 LGAs of Edo and other stakeholders and security agencies to this closed-door meeting to open up ourselves to enable us to get to the bottom of these security challenges.”

Shaibu added, “We want to drastically implement, within the next 10 days, an enhanced security strategy and improve security activities across communities in Edo State. You all will help us to drive the process and make the state safe for us all.”

He further stated, “We will not allow these miscreants to settle down in Edo State and only collaborative efforts will help us flush them out. The land will only flourish when there is peace and order.”

On his part, the Edo State Commissioner of Police, Abutu Yaro, said the closed-door meeting is as a result of the State Security Council meeting held on Monday, which was presided over by the Edo Acting Governor.

Cross-section of traditional rulers, during a meeting with the Acting Governor, Rt. Hon. Comrade Philip Shaibu and and other security stakeholders from the 18 local government areas of Edo State at the Government House, in Benin City, on Tuesday, July 5th, 2022.

He said, “We believe that traditional rulers and leaders of the communities, collaborating with different vigilante groups, hunters, and government security agencies will enhance the security of the state. Security starts from the grassroots; by involving you and security agencies in the grassroots, we will be able to have a more drastic turnaround.

“The security challenges of the state have risen from several angles, as our vigilante and hunters’ groups are not well-organised to secure and deliver the mandates of securing everywhere and everybody. We are not unaware that our local police forces are not enough in numbers and facilities to act alone.”