IBADAN – In line with its determination to improve the performance of the officers and men of the Oyo State Security Network Agency codenamed Amotekun Corps, the Oyo State Government has organized a three-day training workshop for officers of the Agency.
The training, packaged to sharpen the intelligence-gathering and investigative skills of the Amotekun Corps, will enhance their abilities to nip crime in the bud before it is committed.
Declaring the training open, Governor ‘Seyi Makinde, who was represented by the Chief of Staff, Otunba Segun Ogunwuyi, said intelligence remained the most potent tool to stop crimes before they are committed.
At the event, which was held at the Amotekun State Headquarters, Moniya, Ibadan, the governor said it has become imperative to apply intelligence-gathering and analysis to the conventional method of fighting crime.
Governor Makinde commended the leadership and men of the Amotekun Corps on their comportment and how they have cooperated with other security agencies to secure the lives and property of the residents of the state.
He added that with good leadership, the state has been able to prove to the whole world that “it is possible for the conventional Police, DSS and others to work with our own home-grown Amotekun Corps.”
The governor said: “Obviously, we have experts here and I am only here to declare the workshop open. Security intelligence gathering is an act of collecting, standardizing, and analyzing data. It is a great tool in crime prevention as it enables crimes to be prevented.
“It is important to apply intelligence gathering to the conventional method of fighting crime. If we just go about with guns and cutlasses and say we are fighting crime, I am sorry, we have not done anything. If we put our minds to gathering intelligence, a lot of crimes will not even be committed in the first place.
“So, that is why it is good for us to be at this workshop, hear from the experts, and take that knowledge back home.
“I want to wish you well and encourage you all to use the opportunity this three-day workshop will offer, and utilize it to make our dear state safer.
“The participants were selected from the 33 local government areas, which means we want safety across the board in the state. So, with the training, we expect them to go back home and become trainers of other Amotekun Corps.”
In his remarks, the Commandant, Oyo State Amotekun, Col. Olayinka Olayanju (rtd), said the training was packaged because the government realised the importance of enhancing the capacity of the Corps so that they could become more efficient in their operational engagement with the community.
He added that the government brought facilitators with first-hand experiences in local security intelligence-gathering across different African countries with criminal activities, noting that preventing and solving crimes would become easier when the information collection method is very high and effective.
The Commandant said: “If you have observed, we started a series of training last month, which was aimed at empowering the capacity of our men for operational efficiency.
“We started with how to engage with the community and time analysis. And for you to be able to effectively perform those roles, we consider it very important to enhance the capacity of our men in intelligence gathering.
“Apart from the fact that the governor happens to be our father, during his inauguration speech to usher in Omituntun 2.0, he specifically mentioned that he would do all within his power to enhance the capacity of all the security agencies, Amotekun in particular.
“I can tell you that most of the people you are seeing here have operated outside the country because the concept of Amotekun is purely local – because you know the people, understand their verbal and non-verbal language. That was why we decided to bring in these people, who are versed in this area.”
Olayanju further charged participants to ensure they make use of the knowledge garnered in the course of the workshop for their effectiveness and efficiency during operations.
Speaking with newsmen shortly after the training, Col. Olayanju (rtd) maintained that at the end of the training, the Amotekun Corps’ approach to doing their jobs would be different, saying: “I expect that, after this training, when they hear there are cases of kidnapping in a particular area, they should be able to go out there, sieve and process such information and come out with intelligence, which would be used to plan how to intercept the kidnappers.
“Another importance of what we are doing is, we do not, in most cases, want to be reactive. We don’t want crime to take place before we take action. They will now know that it is cost-effective for them to prevent crime. And the only way they can do that is to be able to detect the crime before it takes place.”