Rising from the State Security Council meeting, Lagos Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu on Tuesday hinted that considerations were on the table for cultists and other criminal elements to be granted amnesty.
He said the amnesty window would be made open before the year runs out, warning all cultists to use the opportunity to turn a new leave.
Sanwo-Olu said the idea was mooted following findings that the greatest security challenge confronting the state was that of cultism.
He said: “The security council believes we can open up the period of amnesty for them. We want them to come forward to turn new leave. I do not want to use the word rehabilitate.”
The Nation reports a similar window was offered cultists by former Lagos Commissioner Imohimi Edgal last year which saw over 700 renouncing membership of various cult groups while assorted firearms, other dangerous weapons were recovered from Badagry, Epe, Ikorodu, Lagos Island and Bariga areas of the state.
No fewer than 20 persons have been killed, several others injured and properties worth millions vandalized in different cult clashes across the state since Septemeber. Also, hundreds of suspected cultists have been arrested mostly during raids carried out after each clash.
Notable of these clashes were that of one Aliu Lamidi, 29 who was hacked on October 21, at Chukwuma Hotel in Babashola Street, Itire, where several vehicles were set ablaze.
Similarly, six persons were killed during cult clashes between Aiye and Eiye cultists at Ikorodu and five others murdered at Oworonshoki within a week in Spetember. There was also a violent clash at Ajah within the same period.
Sanwo-Olu assured law abiding residents there was no cause for concern on the ongoing Exercise Crocodile Smile being conducted by the Nigerian Army, adding that it was aimed at ensuring their safety and security.
The governor said there was intelligence on the presence of criminals around Atlas Cove and jetty areas, assuring that these were being closely monitored to prevent pipeline vandalism.
He said the government would take closure of street gates seriously because of a lot of breaches, adding that would CDAs and CDCs would be communicated over the issue.
“The Nigeria Police have asked those who want to engage in street parades and carnivals during this festive period to seek permission.
“We want to keep all the gates open during the day and ensure that they are manned at night. If they are found under lock and key notices will be given to them and thereafter such gates will be removed,” he said.
On the menace of motorcycles, Sanwo-Olu said the government would aggressively enforce the Executive Order on one-way.
“We will continue to aggressively pursue forfeiture and arrest of Okada and vehicles flaunting the law. Okada are restricted to some areas and they must maintain such. They should avoid routes they are not allowed to ply under the law,” said the governor.
Sanwo-Olu promised that action would be taken on articulated vehicles parking under bridges and under powerlines,” he said.
The governor urged residents to exercise patience as regards the traffic situation in parts of the state, noting that the police, LASTMA, officials from public works and road construction workers were doing their bits to ensure free flow of traffic in and around construction sites.
He said the Vehicle Inspection Officer (VIO) who have been returned to the roads in the state would function between 12pm and 3pm when the traffic is low.