My emergence was divine opportunity to rid Kogi of crimes, criminality – Yahaya Bello

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The Governor of Kogi State, Yahaya Bello, has described his emergence as a divine opportunity to rid the state of crime and criminality.

He stated this on Saturday at the Annual Lecture/Fellow’s Night 2021 of the Institute of Security and Strategic Studies on Saturday in Abuja.

Bello was sworn in as Governor of Kogi in January 2016 after the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate in the 2015 gubernatorial election, Abubakar Audu died before the conclusion of the election.

Bello, who was the first runner-up in the primary election that produced Audu, was nominated by the party to replace him.

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Represented at the event by his deputy, Edward Onoja, the governor noted that the state was confronted with several security challenges prior to his assumption of office as governor in 2015.

He said that his administration has succeeded in providing adequate security in the state by enhancing citizens’ involvement in the fight against insecurity.

He said that his government, being youth-oriented, had been able to involve young minds in decision-making on security issues.

He said that he assigned security roles to more than 5,000 young men and women in local governments to collaborate with security agencies and ensure adequate security in their communities.

“Some of the measures taken by the government to tackle insecurity include clearing of highway bushes, equipping security agencies, engagement of youths in vigilance groups and incorporation of hunters into anti-kidnapping squad,” he said.

He noted that his administration also involved citizens in the fight against insecurity through involvement of local government chairmen and traditional rulers in the security arrangement of the state.

He said that the kidnapping of his mother provided an opportunity for him to work hard to rid the state of all forms of criminality and make it safe for the citizens.

“Upon my assumption of office as executive governor of Kogi, I saw it as a divine opportunity among others to rid the state of all crimes and criminality.

“To achieve this goal, we decided to take a simple steps to frontally tackle crime in our society.

“Some of which is highway vegetation control by clearing six metres in either side of the highway across the state.

“This simple initiative improved visibility for travellers and eliminated high impulse of kidnappers that usually pound on unsuspecting travellers around blind spots of the highways to execute their nefarious activities,” he said.

Bello announced that the state had bought and equipped no fewer than 200 security vehicles for the security agencies.

He said that the vehicles were strategically deployed across the state to collaborate with citizens to curb crimes.

Bello also said that the state invested in the use of technology to gather intelligence across the state as well as collaborate with responsible corporate entities in the state.

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