Amotekun: What the Presidency may do

Indications emerged on Wednesday that the Presdency may have begun to weigh a number of options to incorporate Operation Amotekun.

Nigerian Tribune learnt last night that the options included how to ensure a seamless operation of the paramilitary organisation alongside security agencies of government.

Others bother on legal framework and interpretation as well as security expediencies.

Competent sources told the Nigerian Tribune that an effort was already underway in the Presidency on how to resolve issues thrown up by the formation of the security outfit, as part of pragmatic measures to boost security
of lives and property in the South-West.

Top presidency sources informed that Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo is leading an attempt to develop a common ground between the states and the Federal Government on the issue.

Sources informed the Nigerian Tribune that the vice president is in support of the initiative.

“Everyone possibly knows that Professor Osinbajo is one of the leading advocates of
state police and community policing model, so his support for the Amotekun initiative is not unexpected,” the sources said.

The vice president was said to be working out a template that would bring concerned
federal agencies and the South-West states together and propose a way to keep the initiative and secure the support and understanding of the Federal Government.

The sources said the Presidency was desirous of handling the matter amicably because of the critical security issues that necessitated the initiative in the first place.

The template is said to compromise two critical parts, one of which is how to fully
integrate the Amotekun initiative, which is essentially a local policing concept, into
the community policing policy of the Federal Government, currently being implemented by the Nigeria Police.

The second part of the template is said to be a well-considered review of the extant
laws in order to work out an arrangement between the Attorney-General of the
Federation and the attor- neys-general of the South-West states, so they could
together develop a robust legal framework to accommodate the Amotekun initiative.
While calls for a judicial interpretation of the relevant laws on the issue have been
made, inside sources disclosed that a political solution within the ambit of the laws might become more expedient.

It was gathered that the template that the presidency was developing on how to make the Amotekun initiative work would detail how its operations could be within the ambit of the country’s legal codes and prevailing contemporary practice across the country.

The move is believed to have been designed to douse insinuations in official circles that if the regional security initiative was not properly managed, it could generate regional reactions that could undermine other Federal Government agencies and snowball into a messy but needless political crisis.

Besides, while the Federal Government wants to ensure that such initiatives are within the constitutional limits, it does not want to be seen as sabotaging the efforts of state governments to provide sup- plemental security efforts working with the existing security agencies government.

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