Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State, on Monday, proscribed a vigilante group alleged to be illegally operating in the state.
Ortom also directed that anyone seen wearing the group’s uniform should be arrested and prosecuted as he announced that the proscription takes immediate effect.
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He said the Benue State Volunteer Guards whose law was enacted in the year 2000 and recently adopted for full enforcement by the state security council and other stakeholders would be constituted.
The governor in a statement made available by his spokesman, Terver Akase, said the decision was announced shortly after a meeting held with the State Commissioner of Police, State Director, Department of State Security Service, Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Special Adviser on Security Matters, as well as Permanent Secretary, Bureau of Internal Affairs.
He stated that some members of the disbanded Benue State Vigilante Group were also present at the meeting, adding that, the Benue State Volunteer Guards personnel who are to be recruited from kindred levels, according to the governor, are mandated by law, to complement conventional security agencies.
Ortom who enjoined the disbanded vigilantes interested in joining the Community Volunteer Guards to go to their kindreds to be properly enrolled, directed his Senior Special Assistant on Security, Simon Iwar, to oversee the new formation with the active supervision of Security Adviser.
The governor maintained that the Benue State Community Volunteer Guards is an offshoot of the law to provide for the establishment of community volunteer guards (Vigilante) and for purposes connected therewith, 2000.