The Lagos, Ogun, Oyo, Osun and Ondo Houses of Assembly on Tuesday passed the Security Network Agency and Amotekun Corps bill into law. The bill seeks to unify the proposed law guiding the security outfit (Amotekun) jointly established by the six South-West governors.
The Lagos State House of Assembly unanimously passed the bill after the Speaker, Mudashiru Obasa, and his colleagues read it for the third time.
In Ogun, the bill titled ‘A Bill for a Law to Establish the Ogun State Security Network Agency and Amotekun Corps to assist in Maintaining Law and Order in the State and Connected Purposes’ sent by Governor Dapo Abiodun was passed 19 days after.
In Oyo State, the House of Assembly called on Governor Seyi Makinde to sign the bill into law after passing it.
In Osun State, the House of Assembly passed the bill after amending some of the clauses in the bill.
In Ondo, the House of Assembly passed the bill after the Majority Leader, Jamiu Maito, moved a motion for the document to be submitted by the Chairman, House Committee on Security, Ololade Begudu, and seconded by Mrs Favour Tomowemo, who represents Ilaje Constituency II.
Prior to the passing of the bill, the House of Assembly organised a public hearing attended by top residents of the state.
At the hearing, Obasa declared that Amotekun had come to stay.
The Speaker said, “I’m sure we all recall the incidents before the establishment of Amotekun, the killings, maiming, kidnapping and their likes.
“In the wisdom of our governors, they decided on Amotekun.
“Our race has spoken and we must stand by it but in line with the constitution.”
The passage of the bill by Ogun lawmakers at the plenary presided over by the Speaker, Olakunle Oluomo, was done after the presentation of report of the Special Ad hoc Committee on Security and Strategy by the Majority Leader, Yusuf Sherif.
Sherif thereafter moved the motion for the adoption of the report which was seconded by Musefiu Lamidi and supported by the whole House through a voice vote.
The bill was later read and adopted clause by clause by the Committee of the Whole House.
The motion for the third reading of the bill was later moved by the Majority Leader, seconded by Olusola Adams, while the acting Clerk of the Assembly, Deji Adeyemo, did the third reading.
Oluomo directed that a clean copy of the bill be forwarded to the governor for his assent.
The Amotekun bill was passed by the Oyo Assembly after the third reading at a plenary presided over by the Speaker Adebo Ogundoyin.
Tuesday’s sitting was overwhelmingly attended by lawmakers who donned dresses with patterns of leopard (Amotekun) skin. The Clerk of the House and other workers were also dressed like the legislators.
The Chairman, House Committee on Security and Strategy, Akeem Obadara, while presenting the report of his committee to the House, said the bill was a product of extensive deliberation by critical stakeholders.
Ogundoyin said, “By passing this bill, we have made history and we will be creating big strides towards providing and ensuring that all persons travelling along the highways and major roads as well as in remote areas and forests are free to participate in their normal socioeconomic life without fear or hindrance.”
In one the clauses amended by the Osun Assembly, the lawmakers listed the presentation of the National Identity Card or voter cards alongside Omoluabi card as one of the conditions for recruitment into Amotekun.
The House also proposed in the bill that the appointment of Commander for the corps must be subjected to the confirmation of the lawmakers.
Speaking to reporters after the bill was passed, the Speaker, Timothy Owoeye, said Amotekun would help check the security challenges facing the South-West.
Owoeye said, “We cannot abandon the corps to the mercy of the executive. That was why we inserted a clause that the appointment of Corps Commander is subject to the confirmation of the House of Assembly.”
Meanwhile, the Ondo State House of Assembly Chairman of Committee on Security, Ololade Begudu, said there would be a board to be administered by a chairman who will be appointed by the governor.
He said there would be a commander of the outfit must be a retired security officer of not below the rank of a Major or its equivalent, adding that their appointment would be subjected to the confirmation of the Assembly.
The state Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Kola Olawoye, said history had been made following the passage of the bill.
Aworo advises on outfit
Meanwhile, a popular actor and Yoruba leader, Chief Jimoh Aliu, has said the collaboration between the conventional security agencies and Amotekun Corps is necessary for the achievement of the goal of the South-West security outfit.
Aliu, popularly known as Aworo, who spoke in Ado Ekiti on Tuesday, said the aspect of spiritual fortification of the outfit should not be ignored.
He said, “I implore all the fathers, monarchs, prophets, alfas and traditional priests to join forces so that Amotekun can live up to its name. Nobody should be underestimated. Amotekun needs spiritual fortification.”