Niger Delta Nigeria

Gov. Wike raises alarm over illegal vigilante groups in Rivers

Wike pledges peaceful LG poll in Rivers

Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has alerted the country of the plot by some opposition politicians to set up “illegal vigilant” groups he said might clash with the State Neighbourhood Watch.

Governor Wike, who stated that the move is to pave way for the police to ban his new security outfit, said such political plots will fail, adding: “the State Neighbourhood Watch has come to stay” and stressed that only a court of competent jurisdiction can stop the Neighbourhood Watch.

Speaking during a courtesy visit by Usman Abubakar, the Assistant Inspector General of Police in charge of Zone 6 Calabar at the Government House Port Harcourt on Tuesday, Governor Wike said that the Neighbourhood Watch is strictly a security organization that will support security agencies with intelligence to promote the security of the state.

He said that the Neighbourhood Watch is fashioned in line with the operations of a similar agency set up in Lagos State to support security agencies.

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“In setting up the State Neighbourhood Watch, we adopted the process established in Lagos State. This is a replica of what is already in existence in Lagos State.

“We are setting up the State Neighbourhood Watch for intelligence gathering. Policemen and other security agencies cannot be everywhere. They need the relevant support to maintain security across the state,” Wike said.

Governor Wike announced that the State Government has acquired six gunboats for the State Police Command to help it fight criminals along the waterways.

He warned against the politicization of security operations, saying that such actions will be detrimental to the stability of the country.

He reiterated his advice to INEC and the Police to work towards the successful conduct of the 2019 General Election.

He said that the police should not be used to indiscriminately arrest opponents of the ruling party ahead of the elections.

In his remarks, the Assistant Inspector General of Police in charge of Zone 6 Calabar, Usman Abubakar, said that the Zone 6 Police Command is fashioning out ways to reduce cultism, kidnapping and violent crime in the area.

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He appealed to stakeholders to work with the Police to reduce crime ahead of the 2019 General Election.

The Assistant Inspector General of Police called on all groups to come to a round table to work for peace as the police will not tolerate lawlessness.