By Solomon Odeniyi
In a swift move to curtail the influx of miners to Osun state as a result of the recent ban placed on mining activities in Zamfara state, the state governor, Gboyega Oyetola and heads of security agencies in the state held a state security sensitisation programme in Osogbo last week.
The clamp down in Zamfara meant that miners who want to remain in business would migrate to a state like Osun where they could continue with their gold excavation businesses.
At the meeting, Oyetola said the meeting became necessary to forestall kidnappings, drug dealing and raping which happened in Zamfara state.
Oyetola added that his administration will take a robust step to make the state safe, noting that the security of the state is a task for all.
He said the meeting came as a need to make the people of the state happy and comfortable.
The governor said the suspension of mining activities in Zamfara state poses a threat to mining in Osun.
“We must not leave our state to bandits. I urged everyone to come together to ensure the safety of the state.
“There will be synergy among security agencies to fortify the state against miscreants and illegal miners.” he said.
The state Commissioner of Police, Mrs. Abiodun Ige, while addressing stakeholders said the mining activities in the state has attracted migrants, hence the need to take precautions on their activities.
Ige said with the suspension of mining activities in Zamfara state, there’s possibility for miners to migrate to Osun.
She urged those involved in the mining activities to endeavour to be peaceful and settle rifts amicably, stressing that the state is one of the most peaceful states in the country.
The police boss also stressed the need for citizens of the state to assist security agencies by providing timely and credible information of any crime in their communities.
She urged the state government to take the bull by the horn by empowering the security agencies in the state in order to tackle insecurity.
Also speaking, the Director of DSS in the state, Barr. Dan Ekwuaba said some of the bandits banned in Zamfara state from mining are presently in Osun.
He asked what have the traditional rulers, youths and the entire community done to have the background information of those residing in their communities.
“Are landlords only interested in their house rent, do they have any information about their tenants, do they notice any suspicious attitude among them, do they report any of these things to the security agencies?”
The DSS director said some top three wanted bandits escaped in Zamfara last year and settled in Osun state but were apprehended some days after arrival.
He noted that bandits situation is worsened in the country due to the porus nature of The Nigeria borders, as some are from Lake Chad, Niger, Cameroon.
The DSS boss urged the state government to keep a tab on all the mining sites in the state and map them out for adequate monitoring.
On his part, the State Commandant, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Mr Aboluwoye Akinwande said it was discovered that five trucks full of miners entered the state recently.
He said it is not only in Ifewara, Ile Ife and Atakumosa local governments that miners were found, they are everywhere mining activities is taking place.
He said it has also become a tradition for Hausas to settle down wherever they find themselves.
The Commandant said with the support of all stakeholders, the menace of bandits will be tackled.
The commander of FRSC, Mr Peter Oke in the state said citizens should endeavour to inform unit commanders and other security agencies about suspected vehicles in their environment.
Responding on behalf of the monarch, the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi urged the people of the state to support governor Oyetola for the progress of the state.
He prayed that the state will continue to enjoy the relative peace its well known for.
He tasked the monarchs present to cooperate to ensure miscreants are pushed away from their communities.
Ooni urged security agencies to follow traditional rulers to some extreme parts of the state to fish out miscreants.