Security Committee Chairman Absolves Soldiers of Complicity in Awaye Crisis
….As Army Leadership Sends Emissary To Settle Misunderstanding
*Picture shows the Garrison Commander, Nigerian Army’s 2nd Division, Odogbo, Brig. Gen. Edet (middle) and the Chairman, Araromi Local Community Development Area (LCDA) , Ado-Awaye Hon. Ogunleke Timothy (in red cap) after the peace meeting at Awaye*
The crisis that erupted at Awaye, Iseyin local government on Wednesday which led to an attack on some soldiers stationed at the entry of the community has been described by some residents of the community as simple misunderstanding that has been resolved within the community leaders.
The Chairman, Iseyin Local Government Security Committee, Chief Adeagbo Musediq Adeola on Thursday, told The Chronicler Newspaper that a misleading report earlier done to blame the men of the Nigerian Army over a shooting incident should not be believed, as it was colored by politics.
Adeola said from the reports from the police and those present when the incident occurred, the soldiers stationed at the entry of the town asked a motorcycle rider to disembark for search but the latter failed to comply, which led to an exchange of words and misunderstanding among the officers and the rider of the unmarked motorcycle.
The army checkpoint was put in place at each entry of all communities to scare away kidnapers and armed robbers that used to attack commuters on the Iseyin-Abeokuta road and to check the influx of small arms and other illegal weapons from the border towns within the Oke-Ogun region.
“The man riding the motorcycle without plate number went into the town to mobilize some youths and they attacked the team of soldiers, destroying their patrol vehicle and other things at the point, they even took the phone of one of the soldiers and his gun, removed the magazine and did all sorts of other things before sanity prevailed.
“As much as we will not allow security agencies to manhandle our people, we should also know the limitations in relating with soldiers and other security men whenever such skirmishes arise, if those soldiers were not professional enough and had the love of the people at heart, we would not be saying what we are saying today.
“Whenever there is a misunderstanding between anyone and any security agent, the best thing is to be calm and take the case to the office by involving the superiors, we should not be caught engaging soldiers in fisticuffs or a brawl, they are trained to kill.”
The Chairman, Araromi Local Community Development Area (LCDA) , Ado-Awaye Hon. Ogunleke Timothy, in an interview with our correspondence, said the matter has been settled amicably as those involved have been made to see reasons why the soldiers were stationed at the check point.
He enjoined the residents and commuters plying the Iseyin-Awaye-Abeokuta road to respect security men that were drafted to the area to maintain the safety of travelers and residents and comply with directives at the checking point, as they were standards to nip criminalities in the bud.
“The situation was regrettable although we are happy that it has been resolved, as much as we are in position to protect the interest of our people, we will also do everything to maintain cordial relationship between the residents of our communities and the security agents that are here to protect us.
“I enjoin us to please comply with the standard directives at the police and soldiers check points, we have seen cases whereby stop and search operation at this same point exposed people that were transporting illegal items, they are there to protect us, they are not our enemies,” he added.
Meanwhile the Garrison Commander, Nigerian Army’s 2nd Division, Odogbo, Brig. Gen. Edet has visited Awaye community on Wednesday to see to an amicable settlement that will see to a peaceful cohabitation between his men and the residents.
The meeting was held at the LCDA’s Chairman, Hon. Ogunleke’s office and present at the peace gathering were community leaders, leaders of security agencies and other stakeholders.