Tribute To Governor Akeredolu

Tribute To Governor Akeredolu

By Olayinka Balogun

Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu ‘s death touched me in some ways.

As a lawyer, I deferred to him as a Learned senior indeed a Senior Advocate. I also respected his political candor and firm stand on serious political issues even when his political comrades and counterparts decided to prevaricate, dance around and sit on the fence on such issues..He was always straight to the point often giving room to predict him.

However, the area of my total respect for him and the real reason for this Tribute was his stand on Amotekun Security Outfit.

Some few years back, I was privileged to be nominated into the Committee that brought Amotekun into being. On the nomination of Governor Ibikunle Amosun, my Boss in Abeokuta, Ogun State ,I was asked to join a Security Committee set up by the DAWN-the Outfit set up to develop the Southwest in many areas.
All the Security Advisers from the 6 Southwest States met at the Cocoa House in Ibadan and after some period of brainstorming the Committee eventually produced a Report that eventually gave birth to an idea of a Security Outfit that will join hands with the Conventional Police to fight crimes especially as the Herdsmen/Farmers Skirmishes were almost at its peak.

Needless to seesay that at the back of our minds, we were quietly wishing that the ultimate goal of these Security Outfit will be the birth of the much desired ,albeit much misunderstood, State Police..
The immediate reaction of the Federal Government, the subsequent legal and administrative brickbats and the stiff opposition from the Top as they say, is now history.
What stood out clearly, however, was that it was only the brave and determined Governor Akeredolu and few of his colleagues that understood, supported and implemented the Recommendations of our Committee.

As a Lawyer, a Retired Commissioner of Police and a former Consultant on Security Matters in Ogun State, I remember and give kudos Governor Arakunrin Akeredolu as a staunch believer in issues of Law and Security without which he believed no meaningful Development can take place in any Society. He stuck out his neck for his people, expended energy and resources in what he believed .And suffice it to say that Ondo State Amotekun Security Outfit lived up to expectations..The Outfit made waves and created lasting impact in the fight against criminals and criminality in its areas of operation.

They assisted the Regular Police all over the Southwest in bursting various heinous crimes such Armed Robbery, Kidnapping, Communal Confrontations,Riots and serious Disputes arising from Boundary and Land Occupation.In the area of Herdsmen and Farmers Confrontation which was the actual reason that gave birth to the Outfit, their heroic and outstanding performances stood out for Commendation. They displayed deep,unparalleled patriotic commitment that is beyond official performance. They served as a booster to the Regular Police in all their areas of operation thus thereby emboldened the performances of such hitherto reluctant operatives.
Above all they became a ready pool of information and informants to all other Security Agencies and civil population alike.

Their local knowledge of the language, culture,nuances and body languages of the local terrain came readily to assist all other Security Agencies to overcome all forms of baggage burden that would have inhibited or slowed down their onerous tasks of providing the requisite security to the people. The sum total of their successful operations was the improvement of trade,commerce and industries throughout the Southwest sub- region.

Now that the agitation for State Police has been renewed by the populace,there would be no better way of recognizing the wonderful contributions of this wonderful Outfit than to legally develop them into State Police all over the Country.By so doing our Conmpatriot,Arakunrin Rotimi Akeredolu SAN would have been given a befitting monument as a hero of Security and Peace in the Southwest and by Extension in Nigeria.

I want to conclude this Tribute by making two requests. One is that Ondo State Government should please keep the flag of Amotekun flying with all the requisite support. The second request and prayer is that the day should come and quickly too when Security Outfits like Amotekun will develop, with all the legal and administrative ingredients, into formal State Police Outfits as it is practiced in most parts of the World. The indisputable fact remains that effective Security can only best be handled by Policemen- grown, raised, trained and deployed within their immediate environ and localities..Governor Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Odunayo Akeredolu (Aketi)SAN left an indelible mark in this important area of human existence and administration. May his gentle soul rest in Perfect Peace

Dr Olayinka Balogun (CP rtd) psc,fsi.FBINAA.BL.Ph.D

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