By Stanley Nwanosike
Enugu – The police and sister security agencies in Enugu state would mop-up illegal firearms in the state, the Commissioner of Police, Mr Danmallam Mohammed, has said.
Danmallam made the statement on Tuesday in Enugu in an address he presented at a one-day security meeting held with relevant stakeholders.
He said the meeting had become necessary in view of recent emerging security threat, the up-coming ember months as well as the forthcoming councils election in the state in November.
He said that a lot of illegal firearms and dangerous weapons were in the hands of many youths and even adults in the state.
“This ugly development has resulted to unfortunate incidents causing the death of many promising young men and women.
“As we draw closer to the conduct of the local government elections, I am of the opinion that all of us should think outside the box to see how this ugly monster can be checkmated,’’ he said.
The commissioner said the state police command was investigating alleged nefarious activities involving some members of neighbourhood watch groups; which included: kidnapping, armed robbery, rape, murder amongst others.
“The essence of this meeting is to re-awaken our consciousness on the reason why these neighbourhood watch groups are set up in the first place.
“The meeting will also proffer solutions that will ensure that their activities are always within the ambit of the law,’’ he added.
Danmallam called on Chief Security Officers (CSO) of tertiary institutions not to give pump action guns to their security personnel.
“My question is for what reason? Has our tertiary institutions become theatre of war?’’
The commissioner, however, noted with satisfaction that Enugu State is relatively peaceful, stressing “we (the police) are poised to continue to maintain the tempo and to improve, where necessary.’’
“You will agree with me that the population of the state is increasing on daily basis and as such both business and criminal activities are also increasing.
“Therefore, there is need for us to meet with relevant stakeholders to make sure Enugu state remains safe and secured,’’ he said.
The meeting was attended by traditional rulers; leaders of Hausa, Fulani and Yoruba communities; top officers of state niegbourhood watch groups, retired military officers as well as top officers of sister security agencies in the state.
The state Commissioner for Poverty Reduction and Human Capital Development, Mr Obinna Mbaeke and retired Brig.-Gen. Fred Ezeh, the Special Adviser to Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi on Security Matters also attended the meeting. (NAN)