All is set for the commencement of Operation Amotekun, the Western Nigeria Security Network (WNSN).
The legal hurdle which is delaying its take-off will be cleared this week.
Houses of Assembly in the six states – Lagos, Ogun, Oyo, Osun, Ondo and Ekiti – are expected to pass the regional security outfit’s operational bill for the governors to give assent on Friday.
Ekiti State Governor Kayode Fayemi on Monday announced the decision of the governors to make the outfit operational, when he received the bill’s draft from Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice Olawale Fapounda (SAN).
Operation Amotekun was launched by the governors on January 9 in Ibadan but Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister for Justice Abubakar Malami, declared the outfit illegal.
He said the Constitution has no room for a regional security outfit. He also said security is on the Exclusive list.
But the governors insisted that it was the only way for them to protect their people from kidnapping for ransom and other violent crimes.
Following Vice President Yemi Osinbajo’s intervention on behalf of President Muhammadu Buhari, it was agreed that each of the states should legalise the security outfit.
Consequently, attorneys-general in the six states met to draft a bill while the speakers of Houses of Assembly agreed to give the bill accelerated passage.
The Lagos State House of Assembly said it is awaiting the Bill from the Attorney-General’s office. A principal officer gave the assurance that it will be given expeditions consideration.
Osun State Governor Adegboyega Oyetola said yesterday that the bill will go to the House of Assembly this week.”
Speaking through his Chief Press Secretary, Ismail Omipidan, he added: “I want to make it abundantly clear that Amotekun has nothing to do with religion. It has no religious colouration. Those who are insinuating that it is aimed at elevating one religion over the other are probably being misinformed about the origin of Amotekun. Crime, rape, banditry have no religion and tribe.”
He said the recruitment for the outfit in the state will be done at the local government level.
He implored citizens to be assured that his government is for everybody and will not do anything to undermine the peaceful coexistence in the state.
Oyo State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice Gbolahan Adeniran said the Bill is expected to be presented at the Executive Council meeting today for approval and transmission to the House of Assembly.
Fapounda said the content of the bill would be put on Ekiti State House of Assembly Ministry of Justice website for those who have observations to make their views known.
According to him, the Amotekun bill has 38 provisions “painstakingly prepared”, with specifications for each of the states which outline the operational guidelines.