By Samuel Adegoke
A former governor of Oyo State, Otunba Adebayo Alao-Akala, on Wednesday criticised the South West Governors for appointing retired military officers as commanders of Amotekun Corp in their respective states.
Alao-Akala, spoke to newsmen at his Ibadan residence as part of the activities marking his 70th birthday. He said only Lagos State got it right by appointing a retired police officer to head the security outfit.
The former governor , who will clock 70 years on June 3, spoke about his memoir entitled: ‘Amazing Grace,’ scheduled for for launch in June.
Alao-Akala, who is also a retired Assistant Commissioner of Police, said Amotekun is a security outfit that will strengthen internal security and, therefore, established to work with the police for success. He explained that policemen are trained in internal security, adding that Amotekun is structured to operate under the supervision of commissioners of police in the states.
He stated that it was only reasonable to appoint a retired police officer as commanders because he will not only understand the best way to work with the police, the commissioner of police will honour and respect him as his senior, thereby guaranteeing a smooth working relationship that is expected to help the security outfit succeed.
Alao-Akala emphasised that military officers are trained to fight wars and are likely to see themselves as superior to the commissioners of police, a situation that may not allow the police from giving its best support to the outfit.
His words: “The Amotekun Corps will fail in the South West states except Lagos. The outfit is supposed to take care of security of the people and their property across the zone but it will fail in every state except Lagos because the right people were not appointed to head it.
“You cannot expect a soldier to head Amotekun successfully. A police officer is trained specially on internal security management. If fundamentally the foundation is weak whatever you want to put on it would be weak. When you have a soldier there, he is taught how to kill. The governors don’t get it right by appointing ex-military men to head the outfit in the other states.
“If a retired senior police officer was appointed as the head of the Amotekun outfit in a state, the Commissioner of Police in the state would respect him as his former superior. A retired Army officer would want to be forceful in his approach. Remember that only the police can prosecute criminals, Amotekun cannot, so they need the cooperation of the police.
“The Amotekun personnel are not armed; they will be successful if they collaborate with the police by calling for support while trying to burst crimes in their respective states and localities.”