Gov. Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti on Monday vowed to tackle the incessant killings in the state.
The governor spoke during a condolence visit to Orin Ekiti where a 65-year old rice farmer, Emmanuel Ilori, was killed by gunmen on Friday.
He also said local hunters would henceforth be engaged to work with security agents in providing security in communities.
Fayemi further assured the people of the state that “nobody coming from outside the state will be allowed to take over land from the people.”
He said non-indigenes wishing to engage in business in the state must respect the culture of the indigenous people and must pursue their interest in line with the laws of the land.
Fayemi also said the people of the state would now witness deployment of more soldiers, policemen and other security agents.
The governor said he was saddened by the killing of Ilori who he described as one of the leaders of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in the community.
Fayemi said investigation into the killing had commenced, promising to do everything possible to arrest the killers and bring them to justice.
He condemned opposition elements for politicising the incident by alleging that he was planning to give land to “outsiders” in exchange for a future political ambition.
” Nobody is coming to take our land in Ekiti; the governor of Ekiti State has power over the land of Ekiti and it is the person that the governor gives land in Ekiti that can use the land of Ekiti.
”If there are negative comments being peddled around that some people are coming to take over Ekiti land, take over Orin land, take over Ido land or elsewhere, it’s mere hearsay.
”It cannot happen in Ekiti except I am no longer the governor of Ekiti State and there is nobody that can be governor in Ekiti that will cede Ekiti land to outsiders because our land is not even enough for us.
”Adequate security of our people is what concerns me most in Ekiti and Nigeria and I want our people to ignore the lies and falsehood some individuals are spreading around.
”There is nobody that will be governor in Ekiti that will allow outsiders to take over our communities from the people here or say that people coming from elsewhere should come and take over Ekiti land,” he said.
” Those saying this are only playing politics with the matter. This is not politics, security is an issue that concerns all of us.
”Some individuals have been spreading baseless rumours to cause disaffection because they are no longer in power and it is their wish that Ekiti should be consumed by anarchy.
”I want to assure you that our government has not stopped work on security. One of the steps is that our local hunters will work with our security agencies
”Not up to three weeks now, our traditional rulers and community leaders held a meeting and we deliberated on measures and ways to tackle the security challenges.
”No single individual or group can provide security; the local hunters know their terrains very well than our security agents and it will serve the people well if they work together
”I am in Orin today to sympathise with you and tell you of the steps being taken by the government.
”There is no way we can be happy in Ekiti hearing that one of our people was killed more so when the victim was one of our party leaders in Orin Ekiti.
”Since the incident happened, you have seen more soldiers and policemen here in Orin and they are on the trail of the perpetrators and we will not relent in our efforts until they are found.
”Government will do everything possible to prevent a reoccurrence of what happened and from now, you will see more security people not only in Orin but in other parts of Ekiti.
” They are not here to fight you but to protect you.
”Those responsible for this shall be made to face the full wrath of the law. Other steps that will be taken will be revealed in due course,” he said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the governor, who said he felt a sense of loss with the people of Orin, urged them to be peaceful and law abiding.
While praying God to grant the deceased eternal rest, Fayemi promised that his administration would participate in the burial programme as well as render assistance to the family of the deceased.
Responding on behalf of the community, the Elesin of Orin-Ekiti, Chief Francis Falua, expressed gratitude to the governor for the condolence visit.
He urged the governor to ensure that the perpetrators of the killing were arrested and prosecuted. (NAN)