The Governor of Oyo state, Abiola Ajimobi has advised highly placed individuals in the society not to shield criminals.
Governor Ajimobi, who was represented by his deputy, Chief Moses Alake Adeyemo, at the inauguration of the state Eminent Persons Forum which took place at the Police Headquarters in Eleyele, Ibadan, the state capital on Monday the 29th of August 2016, i pointed out that to mitigate rising crime in the communities within the state, eminent persons including traditional rulers, captains of industry and politicians in the state should not shadow or take any criminal under their wing in the state.
The Chief Executive added that instead of shadowing or sparing them (criminals) for personal or selfish reasons, they should expose them in the interest of the state and the general public to rid the state of criminal activities.
According to him, most of the eminent persons not only in the state are the one who usually call security agencies to release their men for personal reasons.
Ajimobi said: “As traditional rulers, politicians, captains of industry, professionals we know who are criminals, it is the eminent persons that usually call the security agencies to release criminals. Please let us expose them.”
“Also, let us protect the welfare of the police. In some circumstances, they (policemen who catch criminals) also have to keep themselves safe.
It is the responsibility of all of us, all of us have the responsibility to expose those criminals we know.
When you talk about the developed countries, lots of times, it is not the police that go after criminals, it is the technology that they use to fight crime, let us put emphasis on modern technology, while not forgetting that we can also use the well known traditional ways of exposing criminals so that things can also work.”
He assured the police of the continued support of the state government in a bid to tackle crime in the state.
“I want to assure you that Oyo state government will continue to support the police so that we can have peace in the state. There is no any other job for the government than to protect the lives and (properties of the citizens) in the state, we are ready to continue to get the state secured.
“I am appealing to the eminent persons to support the state government also. You are aware we have a security trust fund. the government cannot do it alone, let us make sure we are security conscious,”the governor said.
The State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Samuel Adegbuyi informed the gathering that the forum was in line with the directive of the Acting Inspector General of Police, Mr. Idris Ibrahim, to state police commands across the federation to constitute Eminent Persons Forum in their respective states .
The Vice-Chancellor, University of Ibadan, Professor Idowu Olayinka, who was represented at the event by the Deputy Vice Chancellor Administration, Professor Emilolorun Ayelari, called for an improved welfare package for police officers, adding that the current accommodation for police men is very poor and dehumanising .
Others who spoke at the forum included traditional rulers and chiefs. They all lauded the initiative and pledged their support (for the Oyo State Police Command).
Among the eminent guests in attendance at the meeting were, the Otun Olubadan, High Chief Lekan Balogun and High Chief Eddy Oyewole who led the Olubadan-in-Council, Baale of Ekotedo Chief Taiwo Ayorinde leader of Igbo community in the state, Dr. Alex Anozie and Chief Olapade Agoro among others.
Others include representatives of religious groups, Igbo General Assembly, Hausa and Fulani communities, traditional rulers, market women, farmers association among others.