By Samuel Adegoke
The governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Oyo State in the last election, Chief Bayo Adelabu, has offered to rebuild the two police stations burnt in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital during the #EndSARS protest.
Several police stations across the nation had been burnt by protesters during protest last October. The stations at Ojoo and New Gbagi market were burnt during the period. Iseyin police station was also burnt. The station have remained in ruins since then as no effort has been seen to be made by the federal government to rebuild them.
Adelabu, who is a former deputy governor, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), made the offer during a courtesy visit to the Oyo state Commissioner of Police, Mrs Ngozi Onadeko. The politician also donated N2 million to relieve the financial burden of the widows of the slain police officers affected by the EndSARS protest.
His media aide, Femi Awogboro, said Adelabu would immediately start work on the reconstruction once police authorities approves his offer.
The politician, who is former Chairman of the Oyo State Security Trust Fund, pledged his unflinching support to Oyo State Police Command as an indigene, resident and stakeholder to strengthen the security architecture of the state.
He said: “The security of Oyo State deserves urgent and prompt attention by relevant stakeholders for the protection of lives and property of indigenes and residents as well as the social and economic development of the state. It’s quite shameful that almost seven months after the EndSARS protest, the goverment is yet to reconstruct any of the burnt stations. This is what prompted us to decide to rebuild these stations immediately, especially those in volatile locations like Ojoo and Bola Ige International Market, Old Gbagi, on New Ife Road.”
He emphasized that everyone has a role to play in strengthening the security of the state which used to be one of the safest states in Nigeria, hence the need to support the Nigeria Police at this crucial time.
“On the welfare of the widows of the EndSARS victims, we believe that it is also taking too long for the government to respond to the yearnings of these poor women whose husbands died during the protest, by relieving them of the heavy financial burdens left behind for them. It is not that we didn’t know what to do immediately but we have waited for over six months for government to come to their aids. “Since nothing is forthcoming from the government yet, this is our own little way of relieving them of the financial responsibilities as this goes a long way in motivating serving officers of the Nigerian Police. As a stakeholder in this state, we have decided to donate a sum of N2 million to the widows to enable them take care of their immediate financial needs while waiting for government compensation”, Chief Adelabu added.
The police boss thanked Adelabu for his gesture, describing it as an encouragement from citizens who appreciate the importance of joint efforts in tackling security challenges.