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Just In: Southeast governors okay regional security creation

By Monsurudeen Olowoopejo

Following the persistent attacks on Police stations and Correctional centres in Imo State, the Southeast Governors have agreed to set up a regional security outfit called Ebube Agu, to urgently assist the Nigerian Police towards boosting security across the five states within the region.

The governors, Imo, Anambra, Abia, Enugu, and Ebonyi, noted that the security outfit, which would be the state police outfit for the region, would monitor and oversee the activities of vigilante groups across the region to prevent abuse of authority in the states.

They agreed to set up the outfit on Sunday during a security meeting with the region’s socio-cultural group, Ohaneze Ndigbo, and security chiefs from the region and was held in Owerri, Imo state capital.

The meeting, meanwhile, afforded the Chairman of Southeast Governors Forum and the Governor of Ebonyi State, David Umahi, his Imo counterpart, Hope Uzodimma, Enugu governor, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi; Abia governor, Okezie Ikpeazu and Anambra governor, Willie Obiano; the opportunity to review the attacks in Imo and unilaterally condemn actions in the state.

Umahi, who read the communique after the closed-door meeting, stated that the regional joint security outfit, Ebubeagu, central office would be situated in Enugu for proper coordination of southeast vigilante groups.

According to him, a committee made up of security personnel, government officials, and relevant stakeholders will be set up to coordinate and monitor the implementation of the southeast joint security platform.

The governor argued that they have agreed that the heads of all the security agencies in the southeast exchange intelligence in a seamless, effective new order that would help to checkmate crime in the zone.

“And to fast-track crime-busting in the southeast, the heads of security agencies have been mandated to draw up a comprehensive list of their logistics and material needs for sustainable success in the fight against criminality, for the immediate provision by the leadership of the South East.

The Southeast governors, however, requested that the Acting Inspector General of Police (IGP) Alkali Baba, to stop the influx of the special force special team, IGP monitory units, but allow Commissioner of Police and Zonal commands to handle their cases.

They further concluded that the acting IGP and other security chiefs do invite the leadership of Ohaneze Ndigbo and Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) to find out the reason for increasing insecurity within the region.

Aside from that, the governors agreed that military policing in the southeast should be adequately funded in order to become effective to address security challenges when they arise.

They also directed the Nigerian Police and other law enforcement agencies to go after herders violating the ban on open grazing across the region.

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