By Joy Odigie
Benin – Gov. Godwin Obaseki of Edo on Saturday said the power of security was not in carrying weapons, but on ability to disseminate vital information that would prevent perpetration of crimes.
Obaseki made the assertion at the closing ceremony of a 4-day security awareness conference organised by the Vigilante Group of Nigeria (VGN), Edo Chapter in Benin.
The governor was represented at the programme by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Mr Bashiru Kadiri.
He said that community policing should be all about the ability to circulate useful information that would lead to reduction of criminal activities in our society.
Obaseki said that information gathering was a collaborative effort, calling on the citizens to collaborate with the security agencies and the government in reducing crimes to the barest minimum.
According to him, the people perpetrating criminal activities lives amongst us and needed to be identified and reported to the appropriate authorities through intelligence gathering.
Obaseki said that his administration was in a hurry to attract investors for the development of the state, adding that security was essential to achieving the goal.
“We want to create a secured environment that will encourage investors to come to the state.
“This is why my administration is putting necessary strategies in place to ensure that the state is peaceful and secured.
“We have the resources and the land; that is why my government is ready to enhance and utilise them to prevent wastes,’’ the governor said.
Obaseki, while congratulating the participants, urged them to put into practice all they learnt at the conference.
In his remarks, the Commandant-General of VGN, Usman Jaun, thanked the participants for attending the conference, saying that it would sharpen their security skills.
Jaun said that it was necessary for the body to re-align itself with the prevailing global approaches of greater efficiency, vital in the management of security information in the society.
Represented by Commandant Samuel Rotimi, he said that security should be a collaborative effort through sensitisation, awareness and security education with the formal security personnel.
“There should be a call for a virile, efficient and effective collaboration among the stakeholders at the grassroots and security operatives.
“This is a way of winning the hearts and minds in the fight against insecurity in our society,” he said.
Also, a participant, Idemudia Blessing, thanked VGN for organising the security conference, saying that it had sharpen their security skills.
Blessing said that the skills acquired would enable them to contribute toward a ensuring a crime-free society.