The Ondo government says it is trying to ensure that 45 northern youths who were arrested in Okitipupa LGA of the state are returned to their states safely.
The youths were arrested by the state chapter of the Western Nigeria Security Network, Amotekun, on Thursday.
The youths who arrived at the LGA in a truck had said they were in the town to undergo military training in the barracks to be security guards.
Adetunji Adeleye, Amotekun commander in the state, said upon interrogation, it was discovered that the youths, who hailed from Kano and Jigawa states, were brought to the town for employment by a non-profit organisation for purported security training.
“The mission that they claimed they came for, we found out that it was not too clear and upon profiling, we found out that majority of them do not know how they got to where they got to; all they were told was that they were going for training,” he had said.
“From detailed investigation, we were able to narrow it down to the sponsors and they also claimed to belong to an NGO. Right now, we look at them as a security risk to the state.”
Commenting on the incident on Sunday, Donald Ojogohe, Ondo commissioner for information and orientation, described the incident as “a precarious one”, saying the development would have degenerated into jungle justice if the security agents had not handled it professionally.
“The security situation we found ourselves in the last 72 hours was a very precarious one. If not that it was discretely and professionally handled and well managed by officials of government, particularly Amotekun Commander and SSA on security, the situation would have degenerated to the extent of lynching and jungle justice,” he said.
“What government is trying to do today is to ensure that the way they came to the state, they will leave the state safely, peacefully and unhurt, so that when they get to their various states, they will also testify to their state government and their people that the movement that brought them to Ondo state was an unclear one and the state government had to protect them and move them back to their state.”
The commissioner asked the public and government officials to make security agents their first point of contact whenever issues of security arise.
He said: “I have the instructions and the directive of Mr Governor to use this medium inform everybody, particularly, government officials, that any security situation we found ourselves, the first point of contact must be security agencies.”