To ease travel during the Christmas and New Year celebrations, the Federal Road Safety Corps says it has mobilised over 30,000 personnel for its special patrol tagged, ‘Operation Zero Tolerance for Road Traffic Crashes’.
The corps also said it would equally deploy body cameras and ambulances in 46 points in Lagos, Makurdi, Nasarawa, Sokoto and other parts of the country as part of initiatives to ensure safe highways during the Yuletide.
Disclosing this in a statement in Abuja on Tuesday, the Corps Education Officer, Bisi Kazeem, listed the routes to be covered to include Akwanga-Lafiya-Makurdi; Jos-Bauchi-Gombe; Sokoto-Tambuwal-Jega-Birnin Kebbi; Katsina-Kano-Wudil-Dutse-Azare-Potiskum; Kaduna-Saminaka-Jos; Abuja-Kaduna-Kano and Okene-Ogori-Isua-Owo.
Others are Makurdi-Otukpo-Obollo Afor-9th Mile, Asaba-Abraka-Ughelli-Warri; Ibadan-Ogere-Sagamu; and Sagamu-Mowe-Lagos, among others.
Kazeem stated that patrol vehicles, advanced life support ambulances, heavy-duty tow trucks, medium and light-duty tow trucks, patrol motorbikes, extricating machines, reflective jackets, traffic cones, patrolites and radar guns would also be deployed, in addition to breathalyzers, cameras, tablets, alcoholizers and other technical equipment.
Meanwhile, governors of the South-West region have ordered the Western Nigeria Security Network, also known as Amotekun corps, to begin 24-hour inter-border patrol in Ondo, Osun, Ogun and Ekiti states to ensure adequate security of lives and property of the people, especially travellers during and after the Christmas period.
To this end, the corps has deployed no fewer than 310 officers and men for the operation.
The Senior Special Assistant to the Ondo State Governor on Security Matters, Alhaji Jimoh Dojumo, who disclosed this during the commencement of the inter-border patrol at Owena on the Ilesha-Akure Expressway, a boundary community between Osun and Ondo states, on Tuesday, said the decision of the Amotekun commanders to deploy the men was endorsed by the South-West Governors’ Forum led by Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State.
According to him, the decision is to save the lives of travellers and motorists during the festive season.
He said, “We are the one coordinating all the commanders. The steps and actions that Amotekun commanders are taking received the blessings of all the South-West governors led by Arakunrin Akeredolu.
“Our message is that the people should cooperate with Amotekun, because it is there for their own interest. They should help Amotekun to help themselves.”
In his remarks, the Chairman of the South-West security outfit and Commander, Ondo Amotekun Corps, Adetunji Adeleye, who was in company with his Osun State counterpart, Brig Gen Bashir Adewinbi (retd.), explained that the exercise would involve officers patrolling the roads from Osun to Ondo states and others on 24-hour basis.
He said, “It will guarantee the safety of vehicles plying the roads, especially during this Yuletide period, when we expect heavy flow of vehicles day and night.
“This is in continuation of our operation clean-up, which has yielded tremendous results in the area of curbing criminal activities in the state. It is now being extended to Osun, Ekiti and Ogun states so that we can be sure that the Christmas and New Year festivities will be itch-free.
“It’s going to be a routine that will go on throughout this period until the New Year. After the New Year celebration, we will review the security situation to determine if it should be continued.
“We have deployed 750 men across the 18 local government areas of Ondo State. We have also set aside 210 men for the border patrol cutting across Ekiti, Ogun through the riverside areas, and we are also going to cover from Ilesha to Owena-Akure in conjunction with 100 personnel from Osun.”
Adewinbi, on his part, said the agency would deploy 60 operatives along the Osun/Ondo border.
He explained that the security arrangement was designed to guarantee safety of commuters who would be travelling through the Oyo/Osun/Ondo corridor that had gained notoriety for kidnappings and accidents.
Adewinbi stated, “Our men will be on the road for 24 hours. This will not end after the festive season, as we plan to keep the road and indeed all parts of the state safe. Travellers passing through the state should not entertain any fear.
“As I said earlier, we are doing this in collaboration with our counterparts from Ondo State. Our own men will be at Owena, the boundary between the two states.”
The Gombe State Commissioner of Police, Ishola Babaita, has said the ban on the sale, purchase and use of fireworks subsists.
He noted that fireworks sounded similarly to guns and explosives and were contributing to undue panic for innocent residents.
In a statement on Tuesday by the Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Mary Obed, the commissioner called on residents to abide by the order.
According to him, the command will not fold its arms and watch people cause unnecessary disturbances in the state in an attempt to make merry.
“The enforcement of the ban on the use of fireworks and other explosives is to prevent hoodlums from using them as a cover to create panic, perfect their criminal intentions and disrupt peaceful celebration of the festive season,” Babaita said.
Anambra CP assures of adequate security
Similarly, the Anambra State Commissioner of Police, Echeng Echeng, has assured residents of the state adequate protection during the Yuletide.
This was contained in a statement by the state police spokesman, Toochukwu Ikenga, in Awka on Tuesday.
Echeng assured the people of the readiness of the police to perform their statutory function of protecting lives and properties of all citizens during the Christmas and New Year celebrations.
The statement added that the police had ordered the deployment of officers and men comprising conventional police, traffic warders and other tactical teams as well as necessary logistics to all major highways, residential areas, places of worship and places of public resort.
Delta NSCDC deploys 1,341 personnel in recreation centres, others
The Delta State Command of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps has deployed 1,341 personnel to provide security before, during and after the Yuletide.
The Public Relations Officer of the command, Emeka Peter, disclosed this in a statement on Tuesday.
He said, “The state Commandant, Iskilu Akinsanya-Abiodun, has deployed 1,341 personnel to provide adequate security before, during and after the celebrations
“The officers were drafted from the combined force of the Rapid Response Team, the Counter Terrorism Unit, the Department of Intelligence and Investigation, the Tactical Squad, the Agro Rangers Squad, the Armed Squad and the Female Squad.”