The Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC) led by Gani Adams has said it was ready to flush out armed herdsmen kidnapping and perpetrating criminal activities in the region.
The Ondo State Coordinator of the group, Mr. Victor Olayemi, said this during a summit organized by South-west governors to discuss the rising spate of violence and crimes in the region.
Olayemi, however, added that the group was waiting for a directive from the governors in the region, saying it needed their backing before it could launch any successful operation.
The OPC leader said the group would have struck against the criminals terrorizing the region but they were being checked by some leaders in the region. He said:
“We would have struck and stopped the herdsmen terrorizing the South-West but we are waiting to be given a go-ahead. We will be happy if the government is ready to partner us to tackle the bandits.
“On the summit, we have not heard anything from the governors about it, but if they want our inputs, we will be happy to join them. Herdsmen cannot be holding us to ransom in the South-West; we have what it takes to stop them.”
The Coordinating Supervisor of the OPC in Osun State, Adedeji Aladesawe, said the Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland who is also the National Leader of the OPC wrote letters to governors in the region about eight months ago on the infiltration of the region by herdsmen. He said:
“Aare (Gani Adams) wrote to the governors and prominent traditional rulers in the region eight months ago, informing them of the infiltration of the region by the bandits.
“When he did not get any response from them, he wrote a reminder. Yet no action was taken. He (Adams) requested a security summit that would involve all stakeholders on the matter, but nothing was done, despite the warning.”
Meanwhile, governors of states in the South-west have reached out to the army, police and other security agencies on the need to redouble their efforts to stop atrocities being perpetrated by armed herdsmen and other criminals in the region.