Members of the Volunteer Vigilance Youths Group also known as “Civilian JTF” in Borno State on Thursday condemned the move by the federal government to extend the state of emergency in the three states of Borno, Adamawa and Yobe even as they pleaded that they should be armed in order to effectively tackle the Boko Haram insurgency.
The group argued that if their members were empowered and permitted to carry some light arms, they could bring the Boko Haram to its knees just like they did in Kalabalge local government area of the state some few days ago, where their members forestalled a Boko Haram attack by rounding up and killing over 150 members of the sect.
The Civilian JTF made this position known through their legal adviser, Barrister Jibrin Gunda, and their spokesman, Bello Dambatta, during a chat with newsmen on the proposed move to extend the state of emergency in the states.
“The state of emergency just ended its second six months and, as far as we are concerned, it should not be extended any longer. Troops on ground are doing their best but they don’t have the sophistication of the terrorists.
“The president should provide modern fighting equipment and surveillance facilities for the soldiers to do the right thing. We believe that, even without emergency, troops can be deployed to any part of Borno and other states”, Gunda said.
The vigilante group gave reasons why they should be allowed to carry arms like soldiers, who they have been assisting in the campaign against insurgency.
“The Borno State government has done its best in supporting us through training and payment of our allowances which runs into millions of naira.
“We have structures in all the 27 local government areas and our members are highly disciplined. We want arms so that we can take the fight to the insurgents in the bushes.
“We also need arms for our members to protect vulnerable civilians who are being attacked every day. In the south-south, youths have been empowered to protect oil installations. We want a similar gesture to protect our people here”, he added.
Still speaking on the matter, Danbatta lamented that despite their contributions towards ending the Boko Haram insurgency, which in most cases resulted in the loss of lives of their members, they were often not appreciated by the federal government.
“We want to let the world know that we have been actively participating in the arrest of many Boko Haram suspects, including those involved in the latest Nyanya bombing. In fact, we are the ones that sent our members to Abuja and worked with the SSS in arresting the suspects. Unfortunately, our name was not mentioned in the whole thing, as if our role was not appreciated.
“The president had once called us heroes but has never granted any financial or logistic support to our members who are risking their lives to keep the country one. We want the federal government to assist us”, he said.
Several Injured As Thugs Attack #EndSARS Protesters, Governor Oyetola In Osun
Some of the vehicles in the Governor’s convoy were also destroyed by the thugs but the Governor himself was evacuated to safety by his security team.
As the convoy was leaving the protest venue, some of the youths continued to stone his vehicles.
While the protest was disrupted, Governor Oyetola assured the injured victims that the government would be responsible for their medical bills.
#EndSARS: Sanwo-Olu Constitutes Panel Of Enquiry
In a bid to quell the #EndSARS protest which is spreading like a raging inferno across the country, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, the Governor of Lagos State has set up a panel of inquiry and restitution for victims of SARS.
This was announced in a statewide broadcast on Thursday.
The panel will be a 7-man panel which will ensure that all those with verifiable cases of SARS brutality or fatality receive compensation.
The Panel will be chaired by retired Justice Doris Okuwobi, while members are Ebun Adegboruwa, SAN (representing the Civil Society), Taiwo Lakanu (a retired Deputy Inspector General of Police), Patience Udoh (representing the Civil Society); Segun Awosanya aka Segalink (Human Rights Activist).
Others are Olutoyin Odusanya (Director, Citizens Mediation Center), a rep/member of the youth-led protest, and a representative of the Human Rights Commission.
There will be a help desk for the complaints and petitions to the panel.
Governor Seyi Makinde Loses 81-Yr-Old Mother
Abigail Makinde, the mother of the governor of Oyo State, Seyi Makinde, is dead.
The Chief Press Secretary to Mr Makinde, Taiwo Adisa, however, told newsmen that the family will soon make an official statement on the death of the deceased.
He said: “Yes. The family will make an official statement.
“The family will soon make an official statement. In the next few minutes, the family will make an official statement, in few minutes.”
It was gathered that Mr Makinde lost his father, Olatunbosun Makinde, a few years ago.
It was learnt that Mrs Makinde died in the early hours of Thursday.
She died at the age of 81.
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