Eben Enasco Reporting.

On December 4, 2018, Governor Godwin Obaseki unveiled a security architecture, and trust fund and set aside two billion Naira to bolster Police operations in Edo state

Three APCs, 90 patrol vehicles, 30 motorcycles, and 1000 volunteers were launched on December 13, 2018

The governor then, introduced a security system called Wabanzingan to curtail the mess of kidnapping and robbery.

He was applauded for being proactive as a government as many thought the security challenges in the state will fizzle out.

Four and a half years later, Wabazigan and the two billion trust fund have not yielded the projected results except on paper.

According to the Special Adviser to the Governor on Media and Communication Strategy, Crusoe Osagie, in one of the fora, assured that the unveiling which was scheduled for December 13 that year, will set the stage for a new era in the state in which residents will work closely with security agencies, which are being retooled to better perform their functions, which includes ensuring the safety of life and property, to bolster investor confidence across the state.

While Crusoe Osagie’s promises of safety for the people were still subsisting, thousands of motorists and travelers plying Lagos-Ore-
Benin Expressway, near the university, own of Okada, Edo State out of Lagos to the South-South, and South-East zones as well as other parts of the country became stranded and could not access the road over fears that they might get caught up with alleged herders siege on the high ways.

The suffering encountered by passengers daily plying the Benin Auchi Abuja road by Ogbemudia farm and Ahor community all in Uhunmwonde local government area was unbearable as most commuters daily got kidnapped and huge ransoms paid to secure their release.

Many who could not afford the huge ransom are killed by their hostage, a development that compounded the situation.

The attack lingered until a period when the kidnapping resentments moved to another location

However, desperate motorists resorted to driving against these tempting odds and could not stop despite the anxiety created.

While the kidnappings were reducing, the Igueben train abduction sprang up and it was a clean operation by the hoodlums.

On Saturday, January 7, 2023, during train Kidnapping operations, 32 awaiting passengers were abducted and since then, they have been held, hostage despite reports of seven so far free.

Citizens have become weary and described it as a clear indication and a reminder that the two billion set aside as well as the Wabanzingan structure laid by obaseki’s administration is a hoax and only exists on paper.

A resident who spoke on the account of anonymity said the local security outfit in Edo Central with the Moniker, “ATANAKPA” could not have operated at its full capacity, because they are not well-kitted to face the huge task.

According to him, If the two billion set aside by the governor was well expended on the local security outfit, they would have been a match to confront the dreaded herders who have more sophisticated guns.

How do you face a stronger opponent who is well equipped, with day guns, and expects to win the battle? He quizzed.

The state Commissioner for Communication and Orientation, Chris Nehikhare, was heard talking about the swiftness of the operation of its local security network, but never would speak on how much has been expended to kit them.

What happened next put a lie to Nehikhare’s claim to photoshoot of the state customary court and another victim, a former lawmaker in the state was abducted without a single challenge.

Another question that residents of the state are asking is the whereabouts of the Wabaizigan, a security outfit made up of security operatives from the different arms of the security agencies.

Another area that hasn’t received verifying attention is that society has refused to ask about the drones that Governor Godwin Obaseki said so much about not too long ago.

After the attack on the train station citizens are wondering why these drones are not in use and why the sudden silence in addressing these pockets of criminals marauding the Edo territories.

Although Edo State Deputy Governor, Rt. Hon. Comrade Philip Shaibu has said the government is strengthening security to check crime and criminality, vowing that the Governor Godwin Obaseki-led administration will make the state unsafe for kidnappers and other criminal elements to thrive.

Shaibu disclosed this after a meeting with heads of security agencies and community leaders at the Igueben Railway Station in the Igueben Local Government Area of the state on Tuesday.

But this may not be enough of a verbal sentiment to cajole and make citizens feel succor is underway.

The clamor out there only demands stiff action and an outright implementation of policies to snuff out a few elements causing the unrest.


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