The traditional rulers in Ikorodu Division have charged the Lagos State Government and Nigerian Police Authority to grant the division a special security attention in dealing with the enormous insecurity facing its residents.
The Lagos Commissioner of Police (CP) was also charged to put in motion actions that will effectively tackle cultism, land grabbing and other insecurity challenges as a way of reassuring the teeming residents of the division of the security of their lives and properties.
This was the position of His Royal Majesty, Oba (Barr.) Semiudeen Orimadegun Kasali, the Adeboruwa of Igbogbo, who spoke on behalf of the Council of Obas and Chiefs in Ikorodu division at the 2021 Ikorodu Town Hall Meeting on Security.
The royal father, who was a former state counsel, called on the police authority to grant more police stations and competent personnel in different areas of the division to protect lives and properties.
“We are also using this opportunity to let you know that Ikorodu Division needs special attention from the security trust fund because this place is growing faster. We are demanding special status in Lagos State”, Oba Kaasali said on behalf of other Obas at the security meeting.
“Our people have been facing severe security challenges and I want to emphasise that they are in dire need of reassurance from your good office and your men. We want you to speak on behalf of the Inspector General of Police and assure us, the people of Ikorodu division that value and cherish lives, that we will have a secure and safe environment henceforth.
“We abhor criminality in any form. Those that are ‘Badoo’ are not part of us and those cultists engaging in killings are not our children and anyone of them that claim to be is a bastard”.
The royal father, who stated that the CP already had the necessary intelligence on the security challenges, enjoined him to act in dealing with the situation.
“I am happy that the present Commissioner of Police in Lagos, CP Hakeem Odumosu, is a complete community policing expert. He has seen it all concerning our security challenges. All that we are going to be saying here will just be to emphasise our security situation.
“The CP must know that stakeholders here today only need assurance from him on what they knew that you are already aware about the security challenges that they have been facing”.
Speaking on the security challenges that the division has been facing, the Adeboruwa of Igbogbo said that cultism, which he referred to as war among gangsters, ‘Ajagungbale’ (landgrabbing) and robbery constitutes major challenges threatening the social and economic lives of Ikorodu division.
He emphasized that cultism has a connection with land grabbing and has inflicted so much violence on the division.
“Our challenges in Ikorodu are very well known and we thank God that ‘Badoo’ challenge is now a thing of the past.
“We are now battling those that called themselves cultists, but to me, they are gangsters calling themselves Aye, Eiye and others. There are also landgrabbers and I know that some of them are in our midst today.
“Some of those that are here are the ones encouraging landgrabbers. Criminality is criminality and it doesn’t matter if you know or not.
“Landgrabbing and cultism are connected because those cultists are the ones being used by the Ajagungbales”, he said.
“There are also Okada (motorcycle) riders and members of (transport) unions who are also members of these cult groups”, he alleged.
“They are engaged in different factions (cult groups) and fight over the control of parks and areas. Some of them are also engaging in pick – pocketing. These are the menaces that we are dealing with”.
Oba Kasali also stated that the robbery and dispossession of unsuspecting residents of their belongings that is prevalent along Ayangbure road, Ikorodu garage roundabout and Lagos road have extended to other parts of the division.
“It is no longer only Ayangbure, Garage to Lagos road, that these guys are operating. What is happening there has now extended to Igbogbo, lmota, ljede and other places. We are now experiencing what has been happening at Ketu bus stop in Ikorodu”, the royal father emphasised.
“You cannot be on a motorcycle or inside your car to make calls anymore because these guys are lurking to collect your phone.
“All these social vices have now extended to every part of lkorodu division.
“Yes, we are the ones asking for development and we are getting development and we are yet to see anything in terms of development, but we must all be aware of some of the negative effects of development and be ready to discharge our own responsibilities.
“What are our responsibilities as residents? This is a critical question for all of us and we must search our conscience regarding this. Are we discharging our responsibilities as expected?”, the royal father asked.
“My CP, these are some of the security changes confronting us and the Chairman (Ikorodu Local Government) has also stated some in his address”.
The revered royal father also stated that insufficient policemen and stations are also part of the security situation that is facing the fast growing division and emphasised the need for adequate policing of every part of the lkorodu with dedicated police officers.
“The insufficient policing in our communities are also posing security challenges to us. If people that are bound to protect us are not adequate, it is a challenge for us. We need more police stations and many police posts to be manned by committed and competent police officers.
“My Commissioner of Police, we want you to do the needful to reassure us that security will be back to normal in Ikorodu Division. Thank you”.
The Chairman of Ikorodu Local Government, Hon. Wasiu Adeshina, also speaking on behalf of other council chairmen in the division, said that he is confident that the town hall meeting will bring desired peace in the division.
He said that he and other chairmen in the division are conversant with the factors that are causing security challenges and are prepared to tackle them and ensure a peaceful atmosphere.
“I am confident that today, God willing and with one voice of all, these gathering will yield, to some extent, calmness in our communities. I am happy that while identifying the problems at hand like cultism, incessant killings and clashes, these representatives here would be able to send messages to the warring parties on the need for peace, harmony and love.
“As the Executive Chairman of Ikorodu Local Government, this meeting is significant to the general security of Ikorodu and Lagos State.
“We are no doubt aware of the security problems the nation is facing presently, among which are armed robbery, unemployment, smuggling, student unrest, #EndSARS, food scarcity, inflation, religious intolerance, political instability, hatred for mankind, ethnicity, kidnapping and continuous clashes among cultists”.
On behalf of other Council Chairmen, Adeshina called for a more dynamic approach in tackling security challenges by calling on everyone in the division to be conscious of what is happening around them and do everything to encourage peaceful co – existence.
While also emphasizing the commitment of the councils in stemming insecurity, Hon. Adeshina stated that they have been reacting in more practical ways in handling the situation.
“Today, there is need for a more dynamic approach in finding solutions to these problems and I, therefore, urge all of us, as Ikorodu is our own, to be more security conscious, encourage peace and create a relationship that is more brotherly than inciting ourselves to wreak more havoc”, the Ikorodu Council Chairman said.
“I want to assure the good people of Ikorodu Division that the six Chairmen are ready to stop the insecurity situation in the division. We have embarked on different action plans and supportive measures. For example, Igbogbo/Bayeku LCDA has inaugurated its own local joint patrol to checkmate insecurity”, he disclosed.
“Ikorodu Local Government has also concluded plans to purchase three patrol vehicles to support the police and the local security outfit (Onyabo) and inaugurate our own joint task force, ditto other LCDAs”.
He also charged the Lagos Police Commissioner, CP Odumosu, to give adequate support in tackling the security situation in the division while also stating that the division will not relent in confronting the security challenges.
“Commissioner of Police, Lagos State, I think we are not asking for much by asking for the State Police Command support in Ikorodu to combat insecurity”, Adeshina charged.
“I want to reiterate here that, as we are all security administrators, our responsibilities demand that we give necessary support to our communities with the required maturity, patriotism and a new sense of responsibility with the aim of enhancing the security situation across Ikorodu division.
“Ikorodu Local Government and its environs will not rest on their oars in waging an unending war against these unrest, clashes among group cultists and other social ills in all communities of Ikorodu through the law enforcement agents and other security authorities that are available”.
The Majority Leader of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Hon. Sanai Agunbiade, speaking with THE IMPACT, shortly after the security meeting, stated that the security parley was an opportunity for the residents of Ikorodu Division to state that they are rejecting violence that is preventing social and economic developments.
The four – term lawmaker also added that the town hall meeting will afford the Police Chief the opportunity to hear directly from the people what they are facing in terms of security challenges and also get their suggestions on the ways out.
“This is a way to show that the Ikorodu community, which has been battling cultism and all forms of violence, is rejecting the incessant attacks that have killed many and created a violent atmosphere which does not encourage or promote economic activities.
“It is also a way to interact with stakeholders and give find hand information and suggestions towards curtailing the activities of the gangsters called cultists and provide solutions to it.
“It also affords the Commissioner of Police first hand information and knows what people are feeling. Today, you saw a lot of presentations that are submitted to the Commissioner. Before the meeting, there was also an off – the camera discussion by stakeholders and Obas where critical suggestions were also made.
“I want to presume that at the end of the day, all of these will adequately inform the Police Commissioner how to tackle the security challenge headlong”.
The Lagos Majority Leader, like Adeboruwa of igbogbo, Oba Kasali also stated that what the residents of Ikorodu are expecting from the CP is reassurance and commitment that the insecurity that they are contending with are going to be addressed by the Police Chief who is known for his action and experience in policing communities.
“What we are waiting for is a commitment to all these suggestions and going by the track records of Hakeem Odumosu as former Special Taskforce Commander, former RRS Commander and now, State Commissioner of Police, he is a man of his words, action and one that will do whatever that he is set out to do logically and conclusively”, the ranking lawmaker said.
“We are expecting that all these boys fomenting troubles would have read this riot act and they have to know that it is no longer business as usual. Ikorodu people should expect more peaceful atmosphere to conduct their affairs”, Hon. Agunbiade said.