Kogi state governor, Yahaya Bello, on Wednesday warned that his administration would deal ruthlessly with all criminal elements in the state, saying he would not negotiate with bandits.
In a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mohammed Onogwu, the governor gave the warning during the North Central/Nigeria Police Regional Security Summit held at Ta’al Conference Centre in Lafia, Nasarawa state today.
It stated that the summit was to deliberate and strategize on how to overcome insecurity through community policing.
The theme of the summit was: “Strategic Partnership for Effective Community Policing in the North-Central Zone/FCT”.
Bello said with the cooperation of the security agencies, traditional rulers and citizens of the state, the state dealt with insecurity which was common place before his administration and has become one of the safest states in Nigeria today.
He said the criminals who have refused to turn a new leaf should not be negotiated with, assuring the Inspector General of Police that the governors will stand with him in the fight against criminal elements in the society.
Bello said his government has never discriminated against any group of people in the country, adding that those who want to cause unrest will be resisted and treated as criminals.
He said his government at some point supported in vaccinating cattle for the Fulanis free of charge several times as part of efforts in engendering peace and harmony between farmers and pastoralists.
Bello however said that some bad elements amongst the herdsmen who want to distort the peace of the region and the nation’s peace at large should be dealt with severely.
He said the North Central governors and state governments will collaborate in terms security intelligence gathering and form strong synergy to flush out bandits in the region.
He urged citizens and community leaders in the North Central region to play leading roles in identifying bad elements in their domain and reporting same to security agencies with a view to routing criminalitiies out of the region.