By Chesa Chesa
The Senate is ready to back the deployment of soldiers to tackle robberies and kidnappings on Nigeria’s highways as canvassed by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, says Deputy Senate President, Ovie Omo-Agege.
Osinbajo had spoken of the military’s intervention over the weekend in Akure, Ondo State when he paid a condolence visit to Pa Reuben Fasoranti, whose daughter, Mrs. Funke Olakunrin, was shot and killed days earlier by armed assailants along Ore-Akure highway.
While it has generated mixed reactions, the Deputy Senate President, shortly after a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari behind closed doors at the Aso Rock Villa, said the upper legislative chamber would buy into the idea in view of the “exigencies of the moment”.
Omo-Agege told State House correspondents afterwards that “on a good day it is not something we would encourage because as much as possible you will want to keep the military in the barracks but because of the exigencies of the moment we have no choice but to encourage that.
“Nigerians need to be assured of their safety at all times, that is the essence of governance as guaranteed by the constitution. Therefore as canvassed and indeed ordered by the Vice President, that we have the army provide security at the check points, if that will go along way to prevent this kidnapping and banditry, why not?”
He also expressed the sadness of the Senate over the prevailing insecurity in the land, especially in Zamfara State where he lamented that the situation had not improved despite the massive support given to the heads of security architecture there by President Buhari.
He therefore charged the Commissioner of Police in Zamfara State to prove his worth and reverse the tend of insecurity; eben as he asked that same be done in other stages.
“We have taken a position on this. We are not happy like most Nigerians about what is going on in places, most especially Zamfara. We believe that the head of the security architecture in Zamfara being the Commissioner of Police can do more than they have already done.
“We are encouraging them to do that because Mr. President has provided everything that ought to be given to them. Everything in terms of funding received, in terms of acquisition of weaponry has been provided for them.
“It is now left for them to justify the positions they hold in Zamfara, and other states, of course”, said Omo-Agege, who represents Delta Central Senatorial District.