Following launch of Amotekun, a regional security outfit by the South-West governors in Nigeria, the Ohanaeze Ndigbo Youth Worldwide has asked governors of southeast forum to bring back “BAKASSI BOYS” as the region security outfit.
Led by Okechukwu Isiguzoro, President-General, Ohanaeze Ndigbo Youths Worldwide and Secretary, Okwu Nnabuike, the group on Thursday called on South-East governors forum, led by David Umahi of Ebonyi state, to bring back Bakassi Boys.
“The Bakassi Boys are a group of Nigerian youth known for their anti-crime vigilantism, and are usually armed with machetes and guns. They operate in the Igbo area of Nigeria, and are sometimes accused of illegal activities and human rights abuses, yet enjoy popular support in the areas where they operate.”
They were created in 1998 by traders in the Nigerian city of Aba who wanted to protect themselves from armed robbers and “hoodlums”.
The Ohanaeze Ndigbo Youths Worldwide in a statement appealed, saying it will be ok if they get their own community police too.
“Ohanaeze Youth Council Worldwide want to use this medium to appeal to governors of the South East forum to reinstate the proscribed BAKASSI BOYS vigilant group as our own security outfit.”
“This is as a result of the ongoing formation of community policing in other regions of the country, of recent was Amotekun by governors of the South West.”
“Again, in the North, the Civilian JTF and Hisbah Police are already there, so ours should not be different. Besides, the return of BAKASSI BOYS will make southeast the most secure region in Nigeria,” he explained.
The statement, however, noted that the BAKASSI BOYS failed because of the influence of some politicians and rich individuals, “but this challenge can be overcome if operational guidelines, adequate funding are made available in partnership with the federal government and Nigerian security operatives supervising their activities.”
“The funding should not come from southeast governors alone but the federal government as well. Also, security operatives should always monitor and supervise their activities”, the group noted.