The Chairman of Akpabuyo Local Government Council, Hon. Emmanuel Offiong Bassey, has charged traditional leaders in the area to take security of lives and property as a top priority, saying his administration would not fold its arms and watch hoodlums embarking on destruction and killing spree.
This came following spates of kidnapping and cult activities in the area in which some youths took laws into their hands, destroying property worth million of Naira.
Addressing traditional heads in the Council Headquarters in Ikot Nakanda, Hon Bassey lamented the alarming rate of insecurity, and noted that development becomes difficult to achieve in an environment in which lives and property are considered not safe.
He disclosed that vigilante groups would be formed in all the villages and therefore sought the cooperation of village heads, clan heads and other traditional leaders in the task of securing Akpabuyo.
“As part of measures to curb insecurity, the Council will kick-start the formation of vigilante group in all the village in Akpabuyo. The Council expects all traditional leaders in their respective domain to key into this move to redeem Akpabuyo from criminalities,” he stated.
The Chairman further warned that there would be no hiding place for kidnappers and criminals, saying the vigilante group would swing into action immediately after their inauguration.
He said, “Those indulging in criminalities should turn over a new leaf. They should repent and denounce their membership of any unlawful group or be prepared to face the full wrath of the law.”
The Council Boss also inaugurated advisory committee on security made up of the Police, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) and the Department of State Service (DSS), and appointed the Special Adviser on Peace and Security in Akpabuyo, Mr. Francis Edet ,to head the advisory committee.
According to him, the council was also planning to launch what he christened ‘WAKA – War Against Kidnapping, submitting that WAKA would hound down kidnapping syndicates in the area.
In his remarks, the village head of Esuk Ekpo Eyo, Chief Ekpenyong Ekpo Asuquo said traditional leaders in all the villages would work hand in hand with the Council and the vigilante groups to ensure insecurity is stamped out, but appealed to the Council “to do the needful whenever the need arises.”
Also speaking, the village head of Akwa Esuk Eyamba, HRH. Etubom Kingsley Obo Offiong commended Hon Bassey for seeking to bring lasting peace to the Council area, saying the gesture would attract development.
He promised the support and cooperation of traditional leaders and all well meaning sons and daughters and Akpabuyo to every step the Council would take to better the lots of the people.