Amotekun: OPC blasts Northern youths over inciting comments
Lagos State chapter of Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC) has described as inciting and capable of causing unnecessary tension in the country the comments made by the National President of the Northern Youths Council of Nigeria (NYCN) over the new security initiative inaugurated by the six South West governors on Thursday in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital.
Coordinator of the group, Alhaji Mutairu Adesina, said this on Friday in a statement made available to newsmen in Lagos, urging that NYCN should be warned from further making such comments that were dangerous to the polity.
Abubakar had a few hours after the inauguration of the South West security architecture, kicked against the formation of the outfit, describing it as a military wing of the OPC.
But in a swift reaction, the Lagos OPC coordinator, Adesina, while describing NYCN›s comment as inciting and capable of causing unnecessary tension in the country, said it was sad that such inciting comments could come from a leader of a group in the North, even as he queried: Where was Alhaji Abubakar when gunmen and suspected herdsmen invaded farms and communities in the South West, kidnapping and killing people in the zone?
“It is sad that such inciting comments could come from a leader of a group in the North. However, I need to react to this uncomplimentary statement that is capable of causing unnecessary tension in the country. It shows that the group is one of the sponsors of these suspected herdsmen that killed our people and destroyed our farms.
“Since its inception in 1994, OPC has never been found wanting. None of our members has been caught or arrested for kidnapping, destroying or killing other people.The records are there for everybody to see. OPC has always been complementing the efforts of the Nigeria police on safety and security issues. We are not criminals, marauders or kidnappers.
“We have been carrying out our duties as purely a socio-cultural group with Olokun Festival Foundation, (OFF), promoting our cultural heritage and traditions,” Adesina stated.
Speaking further, the OPC chieftain disclosed that the group had structures in 30 states of the country, saying its members were across states of the federation doing their legitimate businesses.
“We have structure in 30 states of the country, and Our members are scattered across the states doing their legitimate businesses.
“So,why is Abubakar referring to us as militants?
“However, I am happy that we are beginning to see them, the enemies of our nation, and region. It only shows that the Northern groups are afraid of us because they know for sure that OPC is the only group that can curtail their nefarious activities.
“The issue of security is sensitive because it is between life and death and now that our governors have risen to the occasion with the launch of Amotekun, why is this group crying over a spilled milk?” Adesina asked.
Explaining the rationale behind the inauguration of Operation Amotekun, Adesina said though the exercise was long overdue, it was a timely response to the myriads of security challenges that had been threatening the peace and tranquility of the region.
The OPC chieftain wondered why Abubakar- NYCN was raising issues where there was none when there were Hisbah in Kano and the Civilian Joint Task Force (JTF) that complemented efforts of the police and military in Borno, among others.
“For instance, there is Hisbah in Kano,and Civilian Joint Task Force (JTF) that complements the efforts of the police and military in Borno, eight states in Middle Belt formed the G8, so why is NYCN raising issues where there was none.
“In the last four years, we have a record of over 200 people across the South West that have been killed by these criminal herdsmen.
“Over 400 people have also been kidnapped and released after paying ransom. So, why is this unnecessary brouhaha over operation Amotekun? he further said.
“This group should be warned because from what transpired between yesterday and today, there are indications that some elements from the North are feeling uncomfortable with whatever progress we are making in the West and that is too dangerous for our polity,» he warned.