*holds closed door meeting with Kwara governor on Ibarapa IDPs in 13 villages
By; BAYO AKAMO, Ibadan
Oyo State Governor, Engineer Seyi Makinde on Tuesday said there is the need for the Nigeria Governors Forum to be firm and speak with one voice in dealing with the security challenges facing Nigeria
The governor stated this while briefing newsmen at the end of a closed-door security meeting between him and the Kwara State Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrasaq, on the challenges of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in 13 villages of Kwara State, following skirmishes in Ibarapa axis of Oyo state
Engineer Makinde maintained that it is now time for leaders in the country, most especially the Nigeria Governors’ Forum, NGF to speak with one voice and be firm in dealing with the security challenges that the country is facing currently.
“We had a joint security meeting. We appreciated the efforts of our security agencies and thanked them for the work they are doing in our country and we encouraged them to do more.” he said.
The governor added, “we also acknowledged the fact that non-state actors are getting the upper hand in communicating and spreading hatred within our country. So, we asked that our leaders must speak with one voice, especially the Nigeria Governors’ Forum”, he said
Gov Makinde added, “we have to be firm and decisive in dealing with the security challenges we are currently faced with.We have also taken notice of the fact that our intelligence-gathering efforts have to be deepened”.
“Considering some of the situations we have been faced with recently, we have had to react instead of being able to act before those things occur, due to some intelligence failure.”
Lauding the efforts of the security agencies in the Oyo and Kwara states, Engineer Makinde tasked them to deepen their intelligence-gathering efforts with a view to dealing more decisively with the security challenges facing the country.
On the joint meeting, the governor said it was necessitated by the urgent need to work together and to look at the security challenges in the states and come up with solutions, especially as it regarded movement of some residents of Oyo State into Kwara, following threats in parts of Ibarapa.
He stressed that the actions of “non-state actors who tried to spread hatred, had led to a number of residents of Oyo state moving into Kwara and constituting a challenge to the state, a situation which would be jointly addressed by the two states.
Governor Makinde pointed out that as a result of this,the governments of the two states have agreed to set up a joint committee to address the challenges of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in 13 villages of Kwara State, following skirmishes in Ibarapa axis of Oyo State recently, adding that the” joint team is to work out modalities on how the two states could mutually address the situation and surmount security challenges within their territories and to also seek alignments and collaboration on economic and security fronts.”
The meeting was also attended by service commanders from the two states, including the General Officer Commanding, 2 Division of the Nigerian Army, Major-General A.B. Omozoje, the Commissioners of Police of Oyo and Kwara states commands, major traditional rulers from Kwara as well as some members of the cabinet of both states.