Ondo State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu has declared that the current spate of insecurity in Nigeria is a great threat to the 2023 general elections in the country.
Akeredolu, who is also the Chairman of the South West Governors Forum warned that if the growing insecurity in Nigeria is not curbed, holding elections in such atmospheres will be almost impossible.
He, therefore, called on the federal government to urgently deploy means to effectively tackle the banditry, kidnapings, and other criminal acts in the country.
The Ondo State Governor made the submission on Wednesday during Channels Television Politics Today interview program.
Newspot reports that his position comes about twenty-four hours after Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom after his meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday, declared that elections can’t hold in Nigeria with the current level of insecurity.
In Akeredolu’s words, ”Nigerians should be worried if banditry activities reach its full-scale.
“I think governor Ortom is right, definitely we cannot conduct election under an insecure environment.
“So if insecurity is not nipped in the bud, it will escalate and if it escalates, all of us should be worried that as at the time we are getting to 2023, we might have a full-scale banditry and other insecurity in the country,”
“With that, there is nobody that can carry out any election under that atmosphere. What is clear is that he has made a good point that the Federal Government must sit up.
“Something just has to be done now to ensure that this issue of insecurity that is escalating by the day is now nipped in the bud and deescalated as soon as possible.”
“We cannot continue to scratch the issue of insecurity on the surface. Security Chiefs must come together and provide solution to the problem. There must be swift responses to cases of insecurity at all levels.”
He recommended the creation of state police as part of efforts to tackle the growing insecurity, noting that state and regional police will complement the activities of the Nigeria Police Force.
“There must be a swift response to all this level of insecurity. For now, since there is nothing else to do, those of us who believe that there should be multi-level policing and the time has come for us to have state police, it is not something you can force down.
“It is something that will have to go through the National Assembly. It takes some time but that is the goal. But before then, I believe that we can have meetings, set up committees on insecurity. Let it be addressed wholesomely without any bias,” he said.
On restructuring, Akeredolu said the time for restructuring is now but maintained that restructuring is not the same as secession.
“Restructuring is fundamental. The time to rise up on the issue of restructuring is now. ” That restructuring has not come doesn’t mean we must opt for secession. We will stay as one Nigeria and address our issues together.
He emphasized that Ondo people have chosen to remain with Nigeria, pointing out that ” leaving a nation, there must be consensus. We have never ceded power to anyone to speak on our behalf. In Ondo State, nobody has ever invited us to such a discussion.”