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Back up Amotekun with the law, Falana tells south-west govs

Back up Amotekun with the law, Falana tells south-west govs
January 21
19:00 2020
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Femi Falana, human rights lawyer, has asked south-west governors to enact laws on Amotekun, the regional security outfit.

Abubakar Malami, attorney-general of the federation, had described the outfit as illegal but the human rights lawyer asked the governors to ignore Malami.

He had said the federal government has no power to outlaw the outfit.

In a statement on Tuesday, Falana said having a law to back Amotekun will give the outfit validity.

“Even though I had cause to join issues with Mr. Malami over his legal opinion on the security outfit I was compelled to call on each of the south west governors to forward a bill to the house of assembly of each state for the formation of Amotekun,” Falana said.

“In the absence of an enabling legal instrument for the establishment, structure, functions, control, funding and operation of Amotekun, various interest groups in the country have continued to express divergent views on the needless controversy that has trailed the official inauguration of the security outfit.

“On their own part, the south west governors have been assuring the federal government that Amotekun is not a regional paramilitary organisation but a zonal security outfit being set up to assist the Nigeria Police Force and other security agencies in combating incessant killings, kidnapping, armed robbery and other violent crimes that are on the ascendancy due in the region due to the negligence of the federal government to effectively police the country.

“Apart from those who are strenuously opposed to Amotekun the concerned people in the south west zone who have embraced the security initiative are entitled to know the law setting it up. Therefore, the attorneys-general in the states in the south west zone should be saddled with the urgent responsibility of ensuring that the enabling laws for Amotekun are enacted by the respective houses of assembly without any further delay.

“The Lagos State Neighbourhood Watch Law coupled with the Lagos State Security Trust Fund Law may be modified or adopted for Amotekun. Once the laws are enacted the federal government will be at liberty to test the constitutional validity of Amotekun in the Supreme Court.”

Falana urged the federal government not to resort to self-help in resolving the legality of the regional outfit.

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