The Governor of Oyo State, Seyi Makinde has unveiled 1,500 pioneers of the Oyo State Security Network Agency, codenamed Amotekun. This was during the passing-out ceremony of the Àmòtékún Corps which held today November 18, 2020 in Oyo Town.
The Governor, speaking at the event, disclosed the history of the group, noting “amotekun is indeed a first of its kind security agency because it is a regional security outfit initiated by one of Nigeria’s six geopolitical zones.”
“History will also state that the headquarters is here in Oyo State. Since its founding, we have been taking steps to ensure that the security outfit kicks off operations. In March 2020, the Oyo State House of Assembly passed the Oyo State Security Network Agency Bill 2020, which I signed into law a few days later”
“Although COVID-19 and other logistical issues delayed the recruitment process, we ran an open and transparent recruitment process that culminated in announcing the 1,500 successful candidates’ names in October 2020. Shortly after that, their training began in the first week of November. Today we are here to witness the passing out parade of the pioneer members of the Amotekun Corps.”
Seyi Makinde explained that “the Western Nigeria Security Network, codenamed Amotekun, is an independent outfit. Members will answer to the state governors, but they will be working with the federal security agencies.”
The Governor further revealed some of the primary functions of the Amotekun Corps that is authorised by law, stating that they would be “Collaborating with and assisting the Nigeria Police and other security agencies in gathering information. They will be involved in crime, the investigation of crime, arrest, and prosecution of persons suspected of kidnapping, terrorism, destruction of livelihood, criminal damage to property, cultism, highway robbery, and any other illegal activities.
“They will also be involved in routine day and night patrols on major roads and remote areas. Members of the corps will be drafted to all the 351 wards in Oyo State. They will be our own community police so that their presence will be felt everywhere. This ensures that offenders are quickly identified, arrested, registered, and promptly handed over to the nearest police station or post. As I said during one of my speeches following the End SARS protests, this is one outfit that I can boldly say hold me responsible for the actions of the members.”
Seyi Makinde also clarified the role of the Group and reminded them of their limit to authority saying, “Therefore, let me state to you 1,500 pioneers of the Amotekun Corps that you must remain excellent examples in service. You are to work for the people. You are not called to harass or intimidate the people. Instead, exhibit the highest level of professionalism in the discharge of your duties. Remember that there are limits to your authority, and always follow directives from the chain of command.”
He also revealed the authorities in charge of the group, saying “We have appointed two qualified men as chairman and commandant of the Amotekun Corps, the persons of Retired General Ajibola Kunle Togun and Retired Colonel Olayanju Olayinka. We also have other eminent persons on the board. I am confident that under them, the Amotekun Corps will live up to their objectives.”
On this note, the Governor declared the Oyo State Security Network Agency codenamed Amotekun operational.