- Akeredolu warns against visiting Southwest with war
Southwest governors led by Lagos State’s Babajide Sanwo-Olu have donated N75 million to Owo people affected by the recent gunmen attack. It claimed the lives of scores of worshippers at St. Francis Catholic Church in Owo, Ondo State.
Sanwo-Olu announced the donation during a condolence visit to Ondo State Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu (SAN) at State House, Akure. Sanwo-Olu visited his Ondo counterpart in the company of Governors Dapo Abiodun (Ogun) and Abdulrahman AbdulRazaq (Kwara) to sympathise with Akeredolu and the people of Owo and the state in general.
Speaking for the governors, Abiodun announced a donation of N25 million each, totaling N75 million on behalf of the three states to the people of Owo. The governors also sympathised with Akeredolu and the people of Owo and Ondo State in general as well as families and victims of the Sunday, June 5 terrorist attack in Owo. He said: “We find the attack, not just an attack on the good people of Owo and Ondo State but the entire people of the South-West.
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“My brothers and I, have decided to support the good people of Owo with a token sum of N25 million each, totaling N75million. We indeed pray that such incidents like this will never recur.” Speaking to journalists during the condolence visit, Governor Sanwo-Olu said South-West states will continue to strengthen internal collaboration and security within the region.
“We had South-West Governors meeting last week and few steps have been taken. First is that we have agreed to have three days mourning period and flags are being flown at half-mast. We have taken steps to strengthen and further reinforce the security architecture in the South-West; of course including things around transportation.
“Indeed all of us have condemned the unfortunate, totally unwarranted killings. It is a completely dehumanising incident that should not be happening in the modern age. The act is condemnable and we condemn it in the strongest terms. “We offer prayers and condolences to families that the incident affected and the entire people of Owo and indeed by extension Ondo State,” Sanwo-Olu said.
Akeredolu appreciated them for the condolence visit, noting that his brother governors in South-West and other parts of the country have been in touch with him and sympathised with the people of Ondo State on many occasions since the dastardly incident. Akeredolu, who is the Chairman of the South West Governors’ Forum, also reiterated their commitment to the lives and security of the geo-political zone.
Akeredolu warned that the people of the Southwest will not tolerate another unprovoked attack on the region under any guise because they have always come to the country in peace and unity. Members of the cabinet led by the Secretary to the State Government, Princess Oladunni Odu joined the governor to receive the visitors.
Akeredolu, who described the Owo attack as one too many, noted that the people of the Southwest region have always maintained peace and unity of the country. He thanked the governors for their solidarity while describing their visit as not just symbolic but important.
“We are part of this country and we have always come to this country in peace and we have maintained peace. We have been trying everytime to maintain Nigeria because we believe in Nigeria. Let someone point to an incident in which we left our enclave or we left this peaceful environment and went to cause problems in other places. Let them tell us. We have come to this country in peace, and now people want to visit us with war.
You want to maim and kill us; it is not easy. “It is a dreadful assault. I said to people that if we were at war and we were armed and faced ourselves, in one day 40 poeple would not die from our side. But this is not war, we were not at war. “This is an assault on us, on our psyche.
We cannot continue this way. We believe in this place, we believe in South-Western region, we believe in Yoruba. Is Yoruba part of the Nigeria we believe in? Yes. “But I thank you for your solidarity. You have come all the time and we have always worked together, all of us. “If you get to the scene, I’m sure it will bring tears out of your eyes.
These criminals, these animals in human skin, what they did was horrendous. They did not come to kidnap, they did not come to steal, they took no dime. They went into the church and shot at everything within their sight”’, the Governor lamented.