Abiodun reads riot act to criminals

Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun has warned of a tough time for criminals, saying that his administration would use all means available to chase them out of the State.

Governor Abiodun gave the warning on Tuesday when he received officers and men of the State Police Command who rescued a Nigerian and three Indian nationals kidnapped at Ilisan along the Sagamu-Benin Expressway last week.

The governor, who acknowledged the gallant efforts of the policemen in rescuing the kidnapped victims, said his administration has put in place measures that would make the state too hot for criminals to operate.

He said: "Sometimes last week, it was reported that over 20 people were kidnapped in this particular instance that we are describing. Of course, the police immediately clarified that it was only four and not 20 as widely circulated and sensationalized.

"A few days afterwards, through various creative and ingenious means, men of the State Police Command were able to bring the kidnappers to book. In the course of tracking and arresting, all of them were neutralized.

"I want to sound a note of warning to criminals that Ogun State is a no-go area. I want to assure them that we are just beginning, and this is a sample of what the State Police Command has in stock for criminals.

"If you test our will, we will come after you, we will smoke you out, we will find you, and we will neutralize you."

Abiodun, while commending the police for the string of successes recorded since the beginning of the year, said this would give investors and residents, the confidence they needed to live and invest in the State as peace and security is the key enabler of socio-economic development of a society.

"As the industrial capital of Nigeria, we take serious offence at any attempt to breach the peace and security that we enjoy as a state. To this extent, we have continue to give the needed support to all our law enforcement architecture, appreciating the fact that any disruption of peace will affect the investors' confidence and the ease of doing business in our state," he noted.

He said the recent award as the 'Governor of the Year in State Security' further underscored the fact that his administration's initiatives, investment, and support for security agencies were being acknowledged.

"I am glad that our support for the police is manifesting in different ways positively. I want to thank the Commissioner of Police for doing a very good job by motivating his men, very good job at collaborating and cooperating with all other law enforcement agencies in the State, including the Department of State Service (DSS), the Army and all others," he added.

While thanking the men who were involved in the rescue operation for putting their lives on the line for the peace of the State, Abiodun said he had to request that they be brought to his office for him to personally thank them.

"I specifically requested that the Commissioner bring them so that I can shake their hands, appreciate them, and let them know that the entire state is thankful for the hard work they are putting in. They are constantly on the line of fire, doing what they signed for so that all of us can sleep with our eyes closed," Prince Abiodun said.

The governor also disclosed that he had personally discussed the terrible state of the bad spots on the Sagamu-Ijebu Ode Expressway, which hoodlums are taking advantage of to ambush travellers with President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, adding that the President has directed the Minister of Works to swing into action and repair those bad portions.

Speaking earlier, the State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Abiodun Alamutu, while introducing the men who took part in the operation, revealed that the kidnappers were engaged in a fierce gun battle with members of the Command's Anti-kidnapping Squad led by an officer who was recently transfer to the state from Oyo State.

The police commissioner said items recovered from the scene of the crime include five AK-47 rifles, 109 rounds of 7.62mm ammunitions, eight AK 47 magazines, and two cell phones.

Alamutu, while reiterating that the state's security architecture was working round the clock to ensure the safety of lives and property of the citizenry, especially along the axis where the incident took place, appreciated the state government for the support given to the Command so far.