The Kogi State Government has debunked rumours of extrajudicial killings in the state.
The government assured residents of its commitment to ensuring security of lives and properties.
This was contained in a press statement released by the state Commissioner for Information and Communications, Kingsley Femi Fanwo, on Tuesday.
The communique, titled, “Fight against insecurity: Only criminals who have no hiding place in Kogi State are protesting,”
The Kogi government noted that anyone protesting against security agencies in the state should be regarded as a criminal.
It read, “The Kogi State Government wishes to state clearly and unequivocally that the good people of the state are totally in support of actions being taken by the security agencies to rid the state of crime and allow the peace that has been enjoyed over the years endure.
“If there is anyone on the streets protesting against the peace and security of the state, that person must immediately be regarded as a criminal whose trade has been cut short by the ‘zero tolerance for criminality’ approach of the security agencies.”
The government urged the people to disregard rumours flying around about extrajudicial killings in the state.
“We want to state clearly that there are no extrajudicial killings in the state as some naysayers and purveyors of violence who were hard-hit by the recent onslaught on criminals in the state want people to believe.
“They have been mourning a criminal, gunrunner, kidnapper who was taken down by security agents after his attack on security operatives in the state. We cannot sacrifice the peace of the state on the alter of violent politics,” the statement lamented.
The state government admitted that there are forces who are sponsoring “ill-informed political agents” to constitute and spread violence within the state.
“The need for us to clear the air on the matter is occasioned by a purported protest by ill-informed political agents in wigs, who are clearly acting the script of sponsors of violence in Kogi State.
“The protest was a deliberate act to misinform the general public and create an impression of crisis in the confluence state ahead of the Guber poll which is slated to hold on November 11, along with Bayelsa and Imo states.
“It was part of a list of activities that were drawn by some unpopular political actors who desperately want power and are banking on using killers and criminals to achieve their blood-drenching ambition,” the statement said.
The Kogi State Government stressed that it “will continue to make deliberate and legally-certified efforts at ensuring peace and security in the state, as that remains the principal responsibility of the Government.”
The government warned politicians against using criminals to disturb the peace of the state, noting that those engaging in that will “always have security agencies to contend with.”
“We again call on security agencies to invite politicians expressing sadness over the death of a criminal for questioning,” as the government also advised the people to go about their daily activities without security fear or threat.
“Our people should go about their normal business without let or hindrance as Kogi will be made safe before, during, and after the poll. We are Kogi and we will keep our state safe,” the statement said.