By Olawale Abdul-Fatah
Lagos State Government has announced amnesty for criminals and cultists operating in the State, asking them to surrender illegal firearms in their possession and renounce their membership of criminal groups.
Announcing the amnesty package on Tuesday, the state Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, a two-hour security meeting held behind closed doors with security chiefs in Alausa, stressed that the package was anyone that could willingly renounce his crimes.
While advising secret cult members to take the offer or be made to face the wrath of the law, Sanwo-Olu said the State is declaring war against all forms of criminalities, including cultism, stressing that his administration would not fold its arms and allow criminal elements to turn the State to a killing field.
He said: “Today’s Security Council meeting is for us to take firm position on all forms of criminal activities. We are coming up with an amnesty programme for secret cults members and members of groups with criminal tendencies.
“We considered that we should open a period of amnesty for them in which we expect these criminals to come forward to renounce their membership of criminal groups and surrender firearms in their possession. To support the amnesty, the State Government will be coming up with an initiative that will focus on the re-integration of the repented criminals and also help them turn a new leaf. This will be done before the end of December.”
The Governor said the State would be strengthening security in all communities as Yuletide draws close, advising those making plans to hold street carnivals and large outdoor parties to request for a permit from the State’s Police Command before embarking on such. The aim, he said, is to enable the police to provide security for attendees and prevent a breakdown of order.
He was joined at the security council meeting by his Chief of Staff, Tayo Ayinde; Secretary to the State Government, Folashade Jaji; Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Moyo Onigbanjo; Commissioner of Police, Lagos State Command, Hakeem Odumosu; Commander, 9 Brigade, Ikeja Army Cantonment, Brigadier General Etsu Ndagi; Commander, Nigeria Navy Ship (NNS) Beecroft, Apapa, Commodore Ibrahim Aliyu; Commander, 651 Base Services Group, Ikeja, Air Commodore Sunday Makinde and Director of the Department of State Service, Abdulfatai Sanusi.