I would like to express my sincere appreciation to you all for your presence at this Town Hall meeting. The very impressive response is an acknowledgement of the fact that the task of ensuring the safety and security of lives and property is a collective responsibility.
The essence of this Town Hall Meeting which is the 9th is to continually create a platform for generation of ideas and solutions to our security challenges and to assure our security agencies of our commitment to their success.
Since the creation of the Lagos State Security Trust Fund in 2007 as a private-public partnership, substantial progress has been recorded particularly in addressing the challenges that gave birth to it. Today, we are faced with even more trying challenges as the Executive Secretary has outlined and the Commissioner of Police has provided some insight.
Events in the last one year underscores security as the major challenge of most modern economies, and we, in Lagos State, are not insulated from these security challenges. One thing is however crystal clear; our commitment to the safety of the lives and property of our people remains non-negotiable and we are prepared to do all it takes to guarantee this and sustain the friendly investment climate in our State.
On assumption of office, my assessment of the security situation and consultation with stakeholders revealed a significant deficiency in the capacity of our security agencies in terms of modern crime fighting equipments. The equipment that we had provided over the years were in urgent need of replacement. The current economic situation in the country notwithstanding, we resolved to refresh our security infrastructure in a manner that clearly demonstrates our commitment.
As we have decided to take our destiny in our hands and fight back those that seek to breach the peace, we must understand that the State government cannot do it alone. We must put together our resources and stand firm in our resolve to confront and eliminate those that continue to test our collective peace.
It is critical that in this renewed action to rid our State of criminals, we must spare a thought for the operatives that put themselves in arms way for our safety. We should be more respectful of the law and relate with the law enforcement agents in a humane and responsible manner. Like it is said “treat them how you want to be treated”.
On your behalf, we have significantly increased the sum assured in the improved insurance package for security agents operating in Lagos State. We shall continue to acknowledge and reward acts of bravery by officers who distinguish themselves in the course of their duty.
Clearly a lot has been done but we must ensure that our gains are not lost by evolving new strategies to enhance our safety and sustaining our support to the Security Trust Fund bearing in mind that everyone can give something whether in cash or in kind, big or small.
I will always count on your cooperation and partnership.
Itesiwaju Ilu Eko, lo je wa l’ogun!!!
Governor of Lagos State,
15th December, 2015.