… Wike Cautions Against Publicity of Ransom Fund Raisers
Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Barrister Ezenwo Nyesom Wike on Wednesday held a town hall meeting in Bwari Area Council over the security challenges in the Area Council.
The Minister explained that the meeting was intended to interact and interface with the people of the Area Council in order to find lasting solution to the security challenges.
He disclosed that security was on the front burner of the Renewed Hope Agenda of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu who insisted that he should come to Bwari to reassure the residents of the area council even though the Federal Executive Council meeting was taking place.
He said ““I bring you greetings from Mr. President who insisted that I must be here this morning. As I speak to you now, the Federal Executive Council Meeting is taking place, but Mr. President insisted that I must be here today to talk with you to reassure you that we will not abandon you.
“Security is one of the key priorities of Mr. President’s administration. Yesterday, Mr. President held a high-level security meeting, which include all the Service Chiefs, the Minister of Defence and my humble self because of recent attacks, particularly in Bwari.
“Security is one of the key priorities that Mr. President’s renewed hope agenda will want to face squarely. It’s no longer going to be business as usual. Everything has to be done to protect lives and properties. Without protection of lives and properties, then we have no business to be in government”.
The Minister also disclosed that he has been mandated by the President to work with the Service Chiefs to ensure that security challenges were brought to a minimum and that approval had been granted to provide all that was required by the security agencies to address security threats in Bwari Area Council and other parts of the FCT.
The Minister said, “Just this morning, Mr. President has given me approval to provide every logistic required to the security agencies. This is not just mere talking. We are serious. Security agencies will not have any reason to say that they are not equipped. We will provide everything required”.
He said the security agencies will take proactive actions in the coming days to bring kidnappings to halt, adding that the government was also doing everything possible to ensure the release of the kidnapped victim and assured the Chairman of the area council that vehicles and other logistics support would be provided for the security agencies and other security outfits to encourage them in their efforts.
The Minister also noted that the bandits terrorizing the residents of the area were those who were dislodged from the North East and were making inroads into the nation’s capital and vowed that his Administration will make the city very hot for them.
“My coming here today is to assure you that we are very serious. To all those criminals and bandits, enough is enough. We will do everything within our powers to make sure that we do not allow this to happen again.”
The Minister therefore called for the support of the traditional institutions and community leaders and urged them to provide information to the security agencies for timely and proactive actions.
He said, “Everybody has a role to play by providing information. By information, you help the security agencies to proactively take control before anything will happen. What will solve the problem is your support to the security agencies.
The Minister who also condoled the council over the kidnapping incidents and the loss of lives, however cautioned residents against disclosing their intentions to raise funds for ransom. He said such actions was helping the bandits and not the government or the people
The Minister said, “Stop going to make announcements that you are ready to raise money. By going to the radio stations, you are not helping us. You are helping them. Why would I go and give a criminal N100 million. There is no money to be raised anywhere. We will fight them to release our people. We will chase them away”.
Speaking earlier the Chairman, Bwari Area Council, Hon John Gabaya thanked the FCT Minister for his timely visit and for the immense support of the FCT Administration to the Council and disclosed efforts of his council in the fight against kidnappings and banditry which include the use of local vigilantes and increased patrol into vulnerable areas.
The Chairman who noted that the difficult terrain of the area made the addressing the security issues more challenging, however, pledged that the Council will continue to do its best to ensure the safety of lives and properties.
Speaking earlier, the Etsu Bwari HRH Ibrahim Yaro and the Sarkin Bwari HRH Awwal Ijakoro also acknowledged the support of the FCT Administration as well as the efforts of the security agencies and the Bwari Area Council in tackling the security challenges.
Also present at the event were members of the FCT Security Committee, former FCT Senator, Phillip Aduda, Community and religious leaders, members of the Bwari vigilante outfit among others.