BY AMOS DUNIA, ABUJA – As part of measures to check insecurity in Niger state, Governor Abubakar Sani Bello has presented 29 operational Hilux pick-up vans to Local Government chairmen and vigilante groups in some troubled areas of the state.
Bello, who made the presentation at Government House, Minna, expressed concern at the increasing rate of security challenges being faced by Nigerlites, especially the rural dwellers.
He said providing the operational vehicles to the groups and some local government councils was to enable them effectively secured their areas.
The Governor described the vigilante groups as critical stakeholders in the face of recent security challenges in the state, especially in the rural areas and urged them work closely with security agencies for the safety and security of lives and property in the State.
He noted that recent security challenges were not only alien to the people but unacceptable to his administration and therefore warned criminally minded people to relocate from the state.
Bello further said that aside from the regular support to security agencies to ensure the state is safe, the administration is reassuring the people its resolve to adequately provide logistics to para-military agencies in a bid to take the battle to the door steps of criminally minded individuals in the state.
According to the Governor, “We are committed to making Niger State safer. It has become necessary to assist the vigilante groups and security agencies in the state with operational vehicles so that they can move around and provide a safer state for us”.
He commended the efforts of security agencies in the state and charged them to re-double their efforts at ridden the state of criminals, adding that, “Our security operatives have been doing their best in the past and it is my considered opinion that with these operational vehicles, they (security agencies) will do more and ensure that our rural and urban areas are effectively patrolled and policed”.
Bello however charged the beneficiaries to maintain and make judicious use of the vehicles.
A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Mr. Jibrin Baba Ndache said 16 Hilux pick-up vans were given to vigilante groups while the Local Government Chairmen got 13.
Earlier in his remarks, Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Alhaji Haliru Zakari Jikantoro said government provided the vehicles to facilitate the movement of council officials and members of vigilante groups to enhance the performance of their duties.