By; OLADELE ADEDAYO, Ado-Ekiti
Following the killing of a policeman in Ado-Ekiti, the Ekiti State capital on Thursday by armed robbers,soldiers and policemen as well as other security agencies have started operation stop and search in the capital city.
The policeman,Sgt Kamoru Momoh, was shot dead along new Iyin-Ilawe road by these men ofthe underworld who had earlier robbed a filling station at Basiri area of Ado- Ekiti around 8:oo am on that day.
The robbers were said to have stormed the petrol station and carted away cash worth over a million naira.
It was gathered that the robbers upon sighting the police Hilux Van
driven by the late police officer, which seemed to be on their trail ,
had blocked the road at the NTA junction with their vehicle and
rained bullets on the policeman and got his head shattered .
The killing, according to the Police Public Relations Officer, Ekiti
Command, DSP Caleb Ikechukwu could not be unconnected with the massive flushing operation carried out by a special task force under the acronym ‘Operation Make Ekiti Safe’, where many criminals had been killed with some apprehended and detained for trial.
“This could be a reaction to the series of cleansing operations
carried out by our special Joint Task Force in recent time. Those
with criminal tendencies might want to go after our men in reaction to our actions,but we won’t be deterred”,he said.
Among other security operatives carrying out the operations were:
Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps(NSCDC), Nigerian Immigration Service, Department of State Services(DSS) ,among others.
Their operations were visible along Ado-Ilawe road, Ado-Iyin road,
Ado-Ijan –Ikare road, Ado-Ikere-Akure road, Ado-Iworoko-Ifaki road and the inner city like Ijigbo, Okesa and Okeyinmi areas.
They stopped all motorists moving into Ado-Ekiti metropolis and
checked their identities while motorbike riders were made to
disembark and pushed their machines for as long as 50 metres before being allowed to take off.
The Police spokesman,who reacted to the thoroughness of the special
forces’ operations since Thursday, dismissed the insinuation that such
could be as a result of the killing of the police sergeant.
Ikechukwu said: “Stop and search was part of the operations of the
special task force . I think they have the constitutional power to carry out routine checks on people moving in and out to test their
compliance to simple rules.
“Let me emphasize here that this special force stated its operations
in Ekiti two months ago and since that time they have been carrying
out their jobs in a civilized way, no harassment, no intimidation of
any member of the public.
“As its name suggest, operation keep Ekiti Safe , it has to perform
the task of making Ekiti peaceful and habitable for all and stop and
search is one of those ways to ensure this.
“Again, if you observed critically, you would realize that they didn’t
mount any roadblock that suggested that they were not out to suffer motorists or extort anybody. They are only carrying out their
statutory routine checks”, he said.
He called on members of the public not to be disturbed by the
operations,saying the operatives are only after criminals and those
with sinister motives of making Ekiti unsafe.