-Iduozee Efe Paul, Benin
The commissioner of Police in Edo State, Philip Ogbadu has disclosed that 54 firearms were stolen from different police formations in the state during the Jailbreak #EndSARS protest.
The CP said jailbreaks were recorded in two correctional centers in the state last year and only eight of the firearms have been recovered so far.
Commissioner Ogbadu made the disclosure when he met with Governor Godwin Obaseki at the Government House where he pledged to work with the state government to check the high crime rate in the state.
“We would do our best to ensure the state is crime-free and there will be changes in the state. Fifty-four (54) firearms were stolen during #EndSARS protest and only eight of the arms have been recovered.
“We will do our best in ensuring all the arms are recovered. Stationary vehicles should be in strategic positions awaiting distress calls from citizens.”
Responding, Governor Obaseki tasked the new police boss to ensure that Edo State is free of crime, adding that the state government would work closely with the police to provide adequate security for Edo residents.
He expressed dismay that no reasonable progress has been made in the investigations into the jailbreaks which occurred during the #EndSARS protests in the state
“The situation where almost 2,000 inmates were released from our correctional centers and no progress made in re-arresting them is worrisome. The circumstances of the jailbreaks are questionable and I have not seen any report or enquiry into the jailbreaks. No visible disciplinary action has been taken against culpable law enforcement personnel.”
The governor stressed that politics should not obstruct crime prevention.
“The elections are over and we will not tolerate any criminal action in the name of politics. Politics should not cover up crime. I am handing over to you the State Security Incident Analysis which contains data on crimes in the state. It provides a clear picture of what is going on in the state but no system is in place to support the state government to check crimes,” he pointed out.
According to the governor, between July 1, 2020 and December 1, 2020, “Edo State recorded 108 kidnap cases and 100 robbery cases which have not been resolved. We want to commit to providing the resources and work closely with you to monitor the way the resources are managed.
He said the people must feel the impact of government on security and urged the police commissioner to take up the mantle .
“We will sit with you to manage security on a daily basis. People should know that there is a government and police in the state. It will no longer be business as usual.
“The Police are expected to work with the state government to ensure that the state is free of criminal elements. As the commissioner of Police in Edo State, your primary responsibility is to the Edo people. Make the presence of the Police felt across the state,” Obaseki charged.